That’s a wrap for 2023!

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New innovations, new research, new teammates, a new lab – and soon, a new year! Before we turn our attention to 2024, let’s take a step back and appreciate all we’ve achieved so far. 

As 2023 draws to a close, we’d like to take a moment to appreciate what a pivotal year this has been for ImmuONE. From an incredible investment of £2 million, to the release of our cell culture model, ImmuPHAGEᵀᴹ, to the launch of our high-content imaging assay, morph_ONE, to our new laboratories in Stevenage and our highly skilled and motivated new staff members, there’s plenty to celebrate. 

Here are a few of our highlights from the past year! 

£2 million investment 

Our biggest news of the year is that we raised an incredible £2 million investment to scale our operations! The backing came from the MEIF Proof of Concept & Early Stage Fund, managed by Mercia Ventures and part of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF), Mercia’s EIS funds, and Pioneer Group. 

This investment has paved the way for ImmuONE’s expansion, allowing us to move to new headquarters in Milton Keynes and a state-of-the-art laboratory in Stevenage. These premises will enable us to continue our research and meet the growing demand for our services. We’ve also been able to hire six new staff members with invaluable experience in science and business. 

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In September, Professor Victoria Hutter and Dr. Louis Scott flew out to Slovenia for the 57th Congress of the European Societies of Toxicology (EUROTOX). We had a very special announcement to make: the official launch of morph_ONE, a cell painting assay for the inhalation safety assessment of drugs and consumer products. 

Through individual cell analysis and layering of cellular features, we can generate detailed phenotypic profiles to show how macrophages respond to compounds of interest. The results can then be compared to our extensive database of established in vivo responses to various reference compounds. 

morph_ONE clearly demonstrates how inhaled substances affect more than a dozen morphological characteristics of human alveolar-like macrophages, offering a detailed and human-centric approach to inhalation safety testing. The assay has the potential to minimise candidate compound failures in later stages of drug development and enhance safety assessments in a variety of industries, such as agrochemicals and consumer products. 

More cell painting assays are in the works – watch this space! 

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This July, we were thrilled to announce the launch of ImmuPHAGETM, a cell culture model designed to assess how substances interact with macrophages in the alveoli of the deep lung. 

ImmuPHAGETM is composed of alveolar-like macrophage cells assembled in vitro on tissue well plates. By adding a target substance to the well plates, companies can gain detailed information about how inhaled substances may affect the lungs. The alveolar-like macrophage cells closely mirror the form and function of native cells, offering human-relevant insights into the effects of chemicals and particles on the lungs. 

ImmuPHAGETM is available both as a product and as part of our service packages. 

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Our fourth birthday 

This year, we celebrated ImmuONE’s fourth birthday and reflected on how far we’d come. 

ImmuONE’s journey started with Dr. Abigail Martin’s PhD project at the University of Hertfordshire, supervised by Professor Victoria Hutter, an expert in in vitro modelling for inhaled products. In 2019, Dr Martin and Professor Hutter commercially validated a model built during Abigail’s PhD with funding from Innovate UK’s iCURE programme. After speaking with potential clients from a wide range of industries, the pair quickly realised just how many problems their research could solve. 

Today, ImmuONE has more than 20 customers worldwide, and we are in talks with a range of other leading brands. We’re also planning to expand our range of products and services. We can’t wait to show you what we’ve been working on! 

It’s amazing to consider how much ImmuONE has grown as a company since 2019. Who knows where we’ll be in another four years?

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The Society of Toxicology (SOT) annual meeting 

Back in March, the ImmuONE team flew out to Nashville for the 23rd SOT symposium. Dr. Louis Scott and Dr. Ewelina Hoffman took the opportunity to meet with several of our existing clients and collaborators while expanding their networks with fresh faces and new contacts.

Thanks to our friendly team, our beautiful booth, and our adorable macrophage plushies, the ImmuONE stand was a big hit. We connected with a range of people from a wide variety of different sectors, all interested in how in vitro lung models could play a role in their inhalation safety testing portfolios.  

We also enjoyed exploring other booths and catching various symposium sessions and talks. If you’re going to SOT next year, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us – we’d love to discuss solutions for your inhaled product risk assessment needs.

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As this year comes to a close, we’re looking forward to making a splash next year. With our new investors, bigger team, and new laboratory premises, the sky’s the limit! Here’s a sneak preview of what we’ll be up to in 2024:

+ ImmuONE_EXPLORETM – keep your eyes out for this new FREE offering from ImmuONE 

+ ImmuLUNGTM –our proprietary technology, currently offered as part of our services, will become available as a product 

+ SOT 2024 – we’ll be at SOT 2024 – see you there?  

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