CONCEPT

This biotech start-up has developed a way to bond antigens to viruses and other particles to make vaccines. Using innovative bonding technology, it isolates components of bacteria which are naturally attracted to each other, making a core protein “superglue”. SpyBiotech plans to use this superglue to bond antigens not to pathogens, but to virus-like particles, replacing other techniques that have in the past been deemed too imprecise and ineffective.

HOW THEY’RE DISRUPTING

Vaccines are one of the most successful of all medical interventions. One of the most effective ways to create them is to make a particle that looks like a virus. Virus-like particles look like a virus on the outside but do not contain any viral genetic material, so they cannot cause disease. If virus-like particles can be decorated uniformly with a protein from the disease-causing organism, the body will raise high levels of antibody to this protein, which protects against infection.

DISRUPTION POTENTIAL

This process is applicable to a wide range of infectious diseases (viral, bacterial, parasitic) and potentially to cancer.

INVESTMENTS AND FUTURE

The company raised £4m in Seed funding in March 2017 from Oxford Sciences Innovation and GV (formerly Google Ventures).