A unique committee in Europe, the MATWIN Board is made up of around twenty international R&D decision-makers from the World Oncology, from 13 MATWIN partner laboratories, accompanied by experts and academic opinion leaders from the largest European research centers in oncology. The MATWIN Board met this year on May 10 and 11 in Bordeaux and selected two winners for their disruptive aspect and their translational potential.
• « Best disruptive science » – Apmonia Therapeutics : the French biotech company located in Reims develops innovative therapeutic strategies against various cancers. Capitalizing on cutting-edge bioinformatics approaches, Apmonia Therapeutics targets so-called “matrix proteins” to fight tumors by reprogramming their microenvironment. The company’s most advanced program is about to enter its first clinical trial in several advanced solid tumors.
• « Best translational development » – Invectys : Invectys is a biotech specialized in immune-oncology, spin-off from the Pasteur Institute in France. Its main project is the development of the first chimeric antigen receptor T cells (CAR-T) targeting HLA-G, an antigen specifically expressed by tumor cells. This immune checkpoint is expressed on the placenta during pregnancy in healthy subjects, but can be neo-expressed by tumors, mimicking the immunosuppressive context of the pregnancy to promote the immune-escape. Invectys’ CARTouche project is a cutting-edge immunotherapy aiming at specifically targeting HLA-G expressing tumors. These CAR-T not only eradicate these tumors but restore anti-tumoral patients’ immune response.
All candidates received upfront six or three-month support by the MATWIN accelerator, profiting from the high added-value recommendations offered by around 50 experts, coaches and industry decision-makers that support the MATWIN initiative. This represents a huge benefit for the projects, in many cases opening new doors for them with international visibility and chances to boost development.
“MATWIN has proven to be decisive for a biotech like ORAKL; it has boosted our image and increased our industry and investors contacts. It has also enabled us to get feedback from real experts which has helped us to mature our entrepreneurial project. Just one year after our presentation to the MATWIN board, we have created the company, have been selected by the Sciences et Tech incubator in Paris Agoranov for a personnalised support, awarded by the “Golden Ticket” from Sanofi and Servier, and we are currently raising our first seed round of funding!” reports Fanny Jaulin, CEO of ORAKL, new spin-off from Gustave Roussy Institute.