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Scarlet Therapeutics gains funding for blood cell platform

Vital financing will allow the company to build a pipeline of novel therapies targeting serious conditions.

Scarlet Therapeutics – a company focused on developing red blood cell therapeutics – has announced that it has generated seed funding from both Meltwind and Science Creates Ventures.

The vital financing will allow Scarlet to advance the development of its blood cell platform, while also building a pipeline of novel therapies to target rare diseases.

Therapeutic red blood cells (tRBCs) are very comparable to regular red blood cells but contain different proteins, thereby providing therapeutic benefits. The cells have pervasive reach throughout the body and an extended life of up to 120 days and expressing the proteins inside the tRBCs ensures they are kept hidden from the immune system.

Scarlet will initially target two rare metabolic diseases: hyperammonemia and hyperoxaluria. Hyperammonemia results in patients not being able to remove toxic ammonia from their system, while hyperoxaluria is a condition defined by too much oxalate in the urine.

The platform also has the potential to treat other metabolic diseases requiring enzyme replacement therapy, as well as cancer and autoimmune diseases.

Harry Destecroix, managing partner of science creates ventures, reflected: “We are passionate about creating and backing great companies and are proud to invest in Scarlet Therapeutics. The technology platform is based on revelatory scientific research from Professor Toye, Professor Frayne, and their team. It is truly groundbreaking with the potential to revolutionise how we treat disease.”

Jonathan Milner, chief executive officer and executive director of Meltwind, explained: “This new therapy modality could make a real difference to patients with a wide range of diseases, particularly metabolic disorders. Millions of people are affected by these life-threatening conditions caused by the build-up of toxic by-products in the body.”

Alistair Irvine, chief executive officer of Scarlet Therapeutics, concluded: “Our game-changing therapeutic red blood cell-based technology is a new modality to treat targets of high value and unmet need. tRBCs have unique qualities; not only are they able to reach all parts of the body, delivering therapeutic benefit to where it is needed, but they are enduring – as their predicted 120-day long life will allow dosing every two to three months.”