Invizius, the biotech spinout company developing treatments to suppress unwanted immune responses to dialysis, has been awarded £1 million in funding.
The Biomedical Catalyst Grant will support Invizius to bring H-Guard, its proprietary priming solution designed to reduce the life-threatening inflammatory effects of haemodialysis, to the clinic. The funds will be used towards H-Guard’s first-in-human safety study starting in 2022.
School of Chemistry research
Invizius was founded with Edinburgh Innovations' support in 2018, based on research by Dr Andy Herbert and his team in the University of Edinburgh's School of Chemistry.
There are currently 3.3 million haemodialysis patients worldwide who receive treatment multiple times a week. Dialysis treatment can reduce life expectancy by two thirds and almost half of patients die from cardiovascular complications, in part caused by the immune system reacting to components of the dialysis apparatus.
The H-Guard® Priming Solution comprises a novel protein that lines the inside of the dialysis filter and helps dialysis to take place undetected by the body’s immune system. This suppresses the blood’s foreign body response preventing a repetitive, hostile inflammatory reaction that increases the risk of cardiovascular complications.
Richard Boyd, Chief Executive Officer of Invizius, said:
Being one of the 17 award recipients selected out of 302 applicants is an honour and validates the potential of our cutting-edge technology to solve a huge unmet need for haemodialysis patients.
We are initially targeting patients with high innate immune response to dialysis, where the worldwide market for H-Guard is estimated to be worth over £1.5 billion.
Old College Capital support
Invizius is supported by a strong syndicate of investors including Old College Capital, the University of Edinburgh's in-house venture fund managed by Edinburgh Innovations.
Other investors include Mercia, Downing Ventures, Scottish Enterprise, Solvay Ventures, Calculus Capital and life science entrepreneur and investor Dr Jonathan Milner. The company has established the regulatory pathway for H-Guard® in North America and the potential for coincident approval in Europe.