Precision medicine start-up enterprise Vesynta has become the first MedTech company to move into a sophisticated laboratory at south London’s newest incubator space, the Innovation Gateway at The London Cancer Hub in Sutton.
Spun out from the Adaptive and Responsive Nanomaterials group at University College London, Vesynta is developing a new technology platform to support personalised dosing guided by ‘medicine exposure’ measurements at the patient’s bedside, applicable across a range of diseases including cancer.
The arrival of Vesynta at the Innovation Gateway, alongside fellow recent tenant The Exercise Clinic – a new company offering physiotherapy and exercise regimes for cancer patients – is a major milestone for The London Cancer Hub.
The companies are the first to take space in the laboratories and collaborative building at the centre of The London Cancer Hub – an ambitious project led by The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and the London Borough of Sutton, which aims to create the world’s leading district for cancer research, treatment and commercial enterprise.
Ultimately, The London Cancer Hub is projected to create 7,000 jobs in the life sciences sector and contribute £1.2bn each year to the UK’s economy.
Medicine exposure technologies
Vesynta is developing new hardware and software technologies to measure medicine exposure, a term that refers to how much of a therapeutic drug stays in the body of a patient, and for how long. This exposure is used to predict dose adjustments that are personalised to the patient, with the aim of improving outcomes and reducing treatment-related side effects.
The company has a particular focus in patient groups that are especially disadvantaged with current ‘one size fits all’ dosing approaches – including children, the elderly and people with large or small physiques.
Vesynta is already involved in several projects with a range of academic and clinical partners, including the National Institute of Health and Care Research (NIHR)-funded ChromaDose programme, which aims to optimise dosing of anthracycline chemotherapies for children with cancer.
Alongside establishing a new base to run its experiments and develop their technology, early steps for Vesynta will include working with experts in cancer pharmacology, precision medicine and data science who are already based at The London Cancer Hub.
The London Cancer Hub
The London Cancer Hub is already home to the ICR and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, which together form one of the leading cancer research and treatment centres in the world.
Alongside the Innovation Gateway, major recent developments at the site include the ICR’s new £75m Centre for Cancer Drug Discovery, the Harris Academy Sutton, and Maggie’s cancer support centre at The Royal Marsden, the latter two of which have won prestigious architectural awards. Ongoing developments include The Royal Marsden’s Oak Cancer Centre.
Other new residents at the Innovation Gateway are due to be announced soon. However, there are still some laboratories available for companies whose work is relevant to cancer. Companies interested in taking space should contact Andy Carr, the ICR’s business development lead for The London Cancer Hub, or Ciara Hanson, Head of The London Cancer Hub programme at the London Borough of Sutton.
Professor Kristian Helin, Chief Executive at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, said:
“We’re delighted to welcome Vesynta as part of the first wave of new arrivals to the Innovation Gateway, and it’s a pleasure to see a vibrant collaborative culture already emerging at the centre – involving active discussions and collaborations with researchers here at the ICR and our close colleagues at The Royal Marsden.
“The Innovation Gateway has a unique place in the thriving London life-science ecosystem in having such a strong focus on translating discoveries into having an impact for cancer patients, and we look forward to working with more companies like Vesynta as The London Cancer Hub develops.”
Cllr Ruth Dombey, Leader of the London Borough of Sutton, said:
“We are thrilled that Vesynta has chosen to make Sutton their home. When plans for the Innovation Gateway were developed, we included high specification labs because we knew this collaborative space would attract the best of the best.
“Not only is Vesynta researching some of the most important technology in the treatment of health issues and cancer, it is particularly significant for children dealing with the awful disease.
“This crucial work means the co-location of their Innovation Gateway lab, alongside The Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden and our other tenants, is even more important. It is a privilege that we can help bring these people together to help tackle cancer.”
Dr Jugal Suthar, CEO of Vesynta, said:
“Being located at The Innovation Gateway is of significant strategic importance to Vesynta, as it integrates our commercial development into a rich ecosystem of clinical and academic researchers who are the key opinion leaders in their field. Our proximity to world renowned institutions will help with our ambitions to strengthen our ties with The Royal Marsden and establish new collaborations with The Institute of Cancer Research in existing and novel areas.”