Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Medicinal Chemistry
Scientific Community
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article

Pioneering Cancer Research Firm Opens in Liverpool

Published: Tuesday, April 03, 2012
Last Updated: Tuesday, April 03, 2012
Bookmark and Share
Launch of Redx Oncology, a new cancer research and development company based in Liverpool.

The first of a 120-strong team of scientists start work at a new cancer research and development company based in Liverpool.

The launch of Redx Oncology is a significant milestone in the city’s plans to develop its knowledge-based economy.

The firm is also the first spin out from Redx Pharma, an early stage drug development company already based in the city.

Redx Oncology has been backed with £5.9 million of public money from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund - the only UK biotech to receive public sector support in the last round of funding.

Redx has also proved attractive to private investors, brokered by Acceleris, the Manchester-based corporate finance boutique.

Redx Oncology starts life with a five-year programme based around Redx Pharma’s existing pipeline of research cancer drugs. These cover a wide variety of cancer types, and are designed to deliver a flow of experimental drugs for progression into human clinical trials.

Derek Lindsay, managing director of Redx Oncology, says: “Liverpool has a highly respected reputation in cancer care. The Liverpool Cancer Research UK Centre along with the University of Liverpool and the Royal Liverpool Hospital provide a rich environment for developing new remedies against cancer. We believe that our new Oncology R&D centre will provide an important new resource in the challenge of improving the patient experiences and outcomes with this disease.”

The Redx Oncology team consists of chemists, analytical scientists, biology scientists, administration staff and up to 24 trainees. Many of these new staff are being recruited from outside of the area.

For now Redx Oncology will operate from labs within the University of Liverpool’s Duncan Building but it is part of a wider vision and will be anchor tenant of a new Liverpool BioInnovation Centre.

This building will have 70,000 sq ft of lab space and was granted planning permission in March. It represents the first phase of a new BioCampus in the city - an ambitious scheme being driven by a partnership between the Royal Liverpool Hospital, the University of Liverpool and the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine.

The BioCampus will sit alongside the planned new £451m Royal Liverpool Hospital and will bring together the expertise of medics, academics and biotech companies.

Tony Bell, chief executive of the Royal, said: “The key to successful knowledge economies is being able to connect academic and specialist research assets to emerging technologies that have major market potential, which is the Silicon Valley model and it’s something the BioCampus has been designed to emulate.”

Max Steinberg, chief executive of Liverpool Vision, the city's economic development company, which supported Redx’s RGF bid said: “The expansion of Redx is a powerful statement of intent in respect of Liverpool's ambitions in bio sciences and we wish the team at Redx Oncology every success with growing the business and contributing to Liverpool’s reputation as a centre of excellence for cancer research.”

Redx has been able to galvanize support because it has opened up a potentially vast new intellectual property space.

“Our approach is based on modifying existing drugs to create novel therapies which have their own IP value” says Dr Neil Murray, chief executive of Redx Pharma.

The Redx approach challenges conventional wisdom within big pharma. A pharmacophore is the accepted chemical model explaining how known medicines bind to their targets.

Traditionally scientists would try and improve upon existing drugs by making chemical changes in such a way as to leave the essential phamacophore unchanged.

Redx challenges the dogma of how to improve upon existing medicines by fundamentally changing the pharmacophore of these drugs and, therefore, entering uncharted drug space which leads to a number of potential benefits.

“Working in this way, we have created a substantial library of original compounds,” says Dr Murray. “A significant number of these compounds have passed the proof of concept stage. They promise a variety of patient benefits such as greater efficacy, fewer side effects or offer a different means of delivery - a pill, for example, as opposed to an injection.”

The company's Redox Switch™ platform technology is at the heart of this process. It allows for rapid assessment of new drug candidates, which can go forward to development programs with lower risk and greater speed through clinical trials.

The compounds which pass proof of concept stage are potentially the product line that will allow Redx to achieve revenues by entering into licensing agreements with mid-sized and large pharmaceutical partners who undertake further clinical studies on promising new drug compounds. As Dr Murray puts it: “We’re a discovery engine for big pharma.”

In addition to its cancer portfolio, Redx Pharma has a pipeline of new compounds in several other therapeutic areas. It is progressing programs in the areas of cardiovascular medicine, influenza and antibiotics.

Redx Pharma expects to do its first commercial deals this year. Dr Murray says Redx Oncology expects to achieve the same in the second year of operations.

Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,800+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,000+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters

Sign In

Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Redx Pharma Agrees Dishman Collaboration
License agreement will allow Dishman to use process technology patented by the Liverpool-based firm.
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Scientific News
Drug May Prevent Life-Threatening Muscle Loss in Advanced Cancers
New data describes how an experimental drug can stop life-threatening muscle wasting (cachexia) associated with advanced cancers and restore muscle health.
Chemical Design Made Easier
Rice University scientists prepare elusive organocatalysts for drug and fine chemical synthesis.
Nanocarriers May Carry New Hope for Brain Cancer Therapy
Berkeley lab researchers develop nanoparticles that can carry therapeutics across the brain blood barrier.
Potential Persistent Tuberculosis Treatment
Researchers have discovered several first-in-class compounds that target hidden TB infections by attacking a critical process the bacteria use to survive in the hostile environment of the lungs.
Shedding Light on “Dark” Cellular Receptors
UNC and UCSF labs create a new research tool to find homes for two orphan cell-surface receptors, a crucial step toward finding better therapeutics and causes of drug side effects.
Giant Molecules Inhibit Ebola Infection
European researchers have designed a "giant" molecule formed by thirteen fullerenes covered by carbohydrates which, by blocking this receptor, are able to inhibit the cell infection by an artificial ebola virus model.
First Therapy Appearing to Reverse Decline in Parkinson’s
An FDA-approved drug for leukemia improved cognition, motor skills and non-motor function in patients with Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia in a small clinical trial, say researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center (GUMC).
Fighting Pain with Ketamine
Researchers at the Texas A&M Health Science Center are using ketamine, a drug that already exists as an anesthetic, to treat pain.
Possible New Treatment for Neurodegenerative Diseases Found
Researchers at the University of Liverpool have found that a well-established anti-epileptic drug could also be used as a treatment for neurodegenerative diseases.
Breast Cancer Drug Beats Superbug
Tamoxifen helps white blood cells clear multidrug-resistant bacteria in lab and mouse studies.
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,800+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,000+ scientific videos