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LightOx ‘thrilled’ as £1.5 million investment boosts oral cancer work

A life sciences company has raised £1.5 million to help develop a new treatment for early-stage oral cancer.

Newcastle-based LightOx says the cash will advance work on an oral gel, activated by light, that targets a serious pre-cancerous condition.

LightOx was founded by chief scientific officer Carrie Ambler, a professor of biosciences at Durham University, and chief executive Dr Sam Whitehouse, with the aim of developing a treatment to replace painful and highly invasive surgery or radiotherapy that can leave many patients with life-altering consequences.

The investment round was led by the GMC Life Sciences Fund by Praetura – a collaborative fund managed by Praetura Ventures – with LightOx’s existing investors, including Newcastle’s Northstar Ventures, also contributing.

Professor Ambler said: “The new investment will enable us to finalise the pre-clinical data package needed to advance our lead drug into clinical trials.

“We are thrilled to have new investment partners to support LightOx during this exciting phase of our drug programme.”

She added LightOx, which is preparing to expand beyond its Newcastle headquarters with a Manchester base, will also explore other uses for its treatment, including bacterial infections and wound care.

Alex Buchan, Northstar Ventures’ investment director, added: “With oral cancer currently ranked the sixth most common type of cancer, we see this as a really exciting new therapeutic.

“Northstar are very pleased to support LightOx in the vital work they are doing.”

June 14, 2024

  • Business & Economy

Created by Steven Hugill