Achilles Therapeutics Announces Grant of European Patent Covering Use of Selectively Expanded T cells Targeting Clonal Neoantigens for the Treatment of Cancer

Nov 17 2020

- Related patent recently granted and equivalent applications pending in multiple countries

Stevenage, UK 11 November 2020 – Achilles Therapeutics Limited (“Achilles”), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing personalised cell therapies targeting clonal neoantigens, a novel class of tumour target, today announced the decision by the European Patent Office (“EPO”) to grant European patent EP3288581B, which covers the treatment of cancer using T cells that have been selectively expanded to target clonal neoantigens. 

The patent is assigned to Cancer Research Technology and licensed exclusively to Achilles in certain fields. The inventors of EP3288581B include three of Achilles’ co-founders, Sergio Quezada, Chief Scientific Officer, Karl Peggs, Chief Medical Officer (effective January 2021) and Professor Charles Swanton, a Royal Society Napier Professor of Cancer and Chief Clinician at Cancer Research UK as well as Group Leader at the Francis Crick Institute and UCL. 

A related patent was granted in Singapore in August 2020 with equivalent applications pending in multiple countries, including the United States. Many patent offices worldwide consider the status of equivalent European cases to be highly relevant to their patent granting decision.

“This is a significant and exciting decision by the EPO,” said Dr. Iraj Ali, Chief Executive Officer of Achilles. “We are using Achilles’ innovative platform to rapidly advance our therapies for the treatment of solid tumours and have two ongoing clonal neoantigen T cell (cNeT) clinical trials; the CHIRON trial in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and the THETIS trial in patients with recurrent or metastatic malignant melanoma.”

Tony Hickson, Cancer Research UK’s Chief Business Officer, said: “Achilles has made significant advances in the development of T cell therapies for cancer, and we are delighted  to see the strides that they have taken since they were founded in 2016.”

– Ends –

Notes for Editors:

About Achilles Therapeutics

Achilles Therapeutics is a clinical stage, biopharmaceutical company developing personalised T cell therapies targeting clonal neoantigens: protein markers unique to the individual that are expressed on the surface of every cancer cell. The Company has two ongoing Phase I/II trials, the THETIS trial in patients with recurrent or metastatic malignant melanoma and the CHIRON trial in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Achilles uses DNA sequencing data from each patient, together with the proprietary PELEUS™ bioinformatics platform, to identify clonal neoantigens specific to that patient, and then develop personalised T cell-based therapies specifically targeting those clonal neoantigens.

Achilles was founded in 2016 by lead investor Syncona Ltd, and in September 2019 the Company raised £100M in an oversubscribed Series B financing led by RA Capital, cornerstoned by Syncona and joined by new investors including Forbion, Invus, Perceptive Advisors and Redmile Group. For further information please visit the Company’s website at:

Further information:

Achilles Therapeutics
Dr Iraj Ali – Chief Executive Officer
+44 (0)1438 906 906 

Julia Wilson – Head of Communications
+44 (0)7818 430877 

Consilium Strategic Communications
Mary-Jane Elliott, Sukaina Virji, Melissa Gardiner
+44 (0) 203 709 5000

US Investor Relations - Solebury Trout
Lee Stern
+1 646-378-2922 

About Cancer Research UK’s Commercial Partnerships Team

Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research. Cancer Research UK’s specialist Commercial Partnerships Team works closely with leading international cancer scientists and their institutes to protect intellectual property arising from their research. The Commercial Partnerships team enables delivery of patient impact through employing commercial models ranging from traditional licensing and collaborations through to spin-out company formation and innovative industry alliances in both drug discovery and non-therapeutic areas. Cancer Research UK’s commercial activity operates through Cancer Research Technology Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Cancer Research UK. It is the legal entity which pursues drug discovery research in themed alliance partnerships and delivers varied commercial partnering arrangements.

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