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AMLo Biosciences secures £1.5 million of investment

A North East company developing life-saving cancer technology has gained significant new investments totalling £1.5 million.

AMLo Biosciences is developing a prognostic test (AMBLor®) for early stage skin cancer.

It has received investment from funds managed by Northstar Ventures, the North East Innovation Fund and the newly launched Northern Accelerator Seed Investment Fund, Esperante Ventures, the British Innovation Fund as well as a number of angel investors.

The investment will help create new jobs in the North East as the life sciences company scales up its operation.

Early funders Esperante and NorthStar have reinvested in a further expression of confidence in the technology and leadership of the business, which is a spin-out from Newcastle University.

The funds will enable the completion of clinical studies, a marketing launch in the UK with NICE support and preparations for the commercialisation of AMBLor® in the USA and Australia in 2021.

The step from academic spin-out to commercial success is critical and this funding will ensure the expert management team has the resource to make the transition.

AMLo’s chair Dr Sandy Primrose said: “This recent investment is a validation of the potential of AMLo’s team and technology.

“The company is entering into an exciting phase and looks forward to turning this financial support into long term value and most importantly, improved outcomes for skin cancer patients.”

AMBLor® utilises a novel dual antibody to detect the presence or absence of protein expression in skin melanoma.

For the first time, patients with early stage melanoma will be able to be classed as low or high risk for future development of metastatic cancer from routine histopathological examination of the primary skin lesion.

At present around 15 per cent of people with Stage I and II melanoma are incorrectly assessed for risk and progress to metastatic disease.

Applied to all early stage melanoma patients, AMBLor® has the potential to save up to 2000 lives a year in the UK alone.

Alex Buchan, investment director of NorthStar Ventures, said: “We are excited about this investment from NASIF which is aimed at showcasing and supporting the high quality companies spun out of North East universities.

“The potential for AMBLor® in the USA, Australia and the UK is significant. The commercial plan embraces novel technology allied to genuine unmet healthcare needs in skin cancer.

“AMLo’s team comprises expert scientific and commercial staff who have already created impressive scientific results. We are pleased to have supported them from the start and been impressed with how the company has developed.”