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MaxCyte looks ahead to “pivotal” 2019 with demand for its cell engineering platform on the rise

MaxCyte licenses out its Flow Electroporation technology to help other companies develop drugs, but it also develops its own treatments, the first of which recently entered the clinic
gene editing
More than 70 companies pay a license fee to use MaxCyte’s Flow Electroporation platform

MaxCyte Inc (LON:MXCT) is looking ahead to a “pivotal year” as demand for its cell engineering technology booms.

Revenues swelled by 19% to US$16.7mln last year (2017: US$14.0mln), driven by deals with the likes of CRISPR Therapeutics and Gilead-owned Kite to use its Flow Electroporation software.

READ: MaxCyte fighting cancer battle on two fronts

Flow Electroporation is used in gene editing and allows almost any molecule – such as DNA, RNA or proteins – to be delivered into any cell with minimal cell disturbance.

The top-line boost helped underlying losses narrow to US$0.8mln in 2018, down from US$1.2mln a year earlier.

That figure excludes a US$6.5mln investment into CARMA – MaxCyte’s cell therapy platform which it is using to develop drug candidates that harness the immune system to attack tumours.

The first drug from that platform, MCY-M11, began a Phase I study last year and is being used to treat 15 women with ovarian cancer and peritoneal mesothelioma, which forms around the tissue lining of the womb.

MaxCyte hopes this first study will help to validate and establish CARMA, and a second trial is earmarked to get underway later in 2019.

The company finished the year with US$14.4mln of cash in the bank, although a US$12.9mln (£10.0mln) fundraise last month will have topped up the coffers even further.

At the forefront of a growing sector

“Our core markets, cell therapy and immuno-oncology, continue to expand rapidly as do applications for gene-editing technologies in the development of various therapies for the treatment of inherited genetic diseases and a number of cancers,” said chief executive Doug Doerfler.

“MaxCyte has established itself as a world leader in non-viral cell engineering - offering a rapid and efficient means of delivering the future generation of cell-based therapies, which is underlined by recent commercial and research partnerships with leading biotech companies including Kite.”

He added: “This is a very exciting time for the Company and our team, and we expect 2019 to be a pivotal year for MaxCyte.”

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