UK-based ImmuONE secures £2M in funding. The round was led by MEIF Proof of Concept & Early Stage Fund, which is handled by Mercia Ventures and part of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF), Mercia’s EIS funds and Pioneer Group.
The company will use the money to expand capacity, continue research and development, grow its workforce, hire six fresh hires, and move into larger headquarters in Milton Keynes and Stevenage in order to fulfil the growing demand.
ImmuONE, under the leadership of Dr. Abigail Martin and Professor Victoria Hutter, developed a three-dimensional human lung model that can evaluate the safety of novel medications without requiring for animal testing. This allows businesses developing novel drugs, chemicals, or cosmetics to comply with regulations by demonstrating the products’ safety for ingestion and general use.
The majority of current safety assessments are either based on lung-scraping, an intrusive technique that only delivers tissue from the upper lung, or animal testing, which is inaccurate in predicting its impact on humans.
Companies can test the impact of their products on lung inflammation and small airways without using animals thanks to ImmuONE’s approach, which involves growing immune cells and human lower lung tissue in a lab to create a 3D model. This method yields more precise and repeatable findings.
Dr. Martin created the model while pursuing her doctoral studies at the University of Hertfordshire. In 2019, she joined up with her supervisor, Prof. Hutter, to launch the company. Currently, they serve about 20 clients worldwide, including renowned consumer goods and chemical industries.
ImmuONE focuses in epithelial cell culture platforms, testing services, and human alveolar macrophage responses. Our respiratory tissue models yield relevant, consistent, and reproducible outcomes because they closely mimic lung physiology.
ImmuONE collaborates with academia and industry to develop sustainable technologies that allow for mechanistic safety evaluations that are applicable to humans and the development of cell models devoid of animal products.