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Activiomics – innovative proteomics methods for the pharma industry

Copyright: iStockphoto

BBSRC-funded research at Queen Mary University of London supported the development of an innovative new method for studying the proteins within cells, which led to the creation of spin-out company Activiomics in 2011.

Activiomics provided services to major players in the pharmaceutical industry, such as GSK and Genentech, to support their drug discovery programmes. The company focused on a key family of proteins called the PI3 kinases and the signalling pathway they mediate, which controls vital cellular processes such as insulin signalling and cell growth. Mutations in the PI3 kinase pathway have been linked to various cancers, hence the interest from pharma sector.

Data breakout

£4M Value of Activiomics company when sold
£331,000 Value of grant used to develop the technology
5 Full-time staff first employed at Activiomics

Developed by Dr Pedro R. Cutillas at QMUL and Professor Bart Vanhaesebroeck now of the at the UCL Cancer Institute, their unique proteomics technology can be used to identify biomarkers of disease, as well as conducting in-house research into biomarkers associated with breast cancer.

“The methodology was in part developed using a BBSRC award and it was this technology that was then incorporated into Activiomics as part of their core business,” says Cutillas.

In 2014 Activiomics was sold to Retroscreen Virology Group plc (now renamed hVIVO) for £4M, and now focuses on biomarkers for respiratory diseases.

Read the full impact evidence report: