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Avacta completes move away from Whittlesford to Scale Space on the Imperial College White City Campus in London



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Avacta has completed its move away from Whittlesford to bring its research and development teams together in a single space in London.

It has been at the One Lion Works Business Park since 2016, during which time it progressed to a biopharmaceutical company with its first candidate - AVA6000 - entering the clinic in August 2021.

Avacta has left Whittlesford. Picture: Keith Heppell
Avacta has left Whittlesford. Picture: Keith Heppell

But the company believes a switch to larger, more modern facilities at Scale Space, on the Imperial College White City Campus, will help it continue its growth and help it accelerate its cancer therapeutic programmes into the clinic.

Dr Fiona McLaughlin, chief scientific officer of Avacta, said: “This move is the result of a clear vision to bring together the research and development teams into one hub to facilitate the translation of our in-house research from bench to bedside. We are now at the heart of the innovative White City community in London, readily accessible to our collaborators around the world and poised to take Avacta to the next level in its evolution as a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company.”

Avacta’s R&D teams were previously split between Whittlesford and London, while its separate diagnostics business unit remains in Wetherby.

AVA6000, the company’s lead chemotherapy programme using its pre|CISION targeting platform, is a tumour-activated form of doxorubicin.

Avacta has left Whittlesford. Picture: Keith Heppell
Avacta has left Whittlesford. Picture: Keith Heppell

Neil Bell, chief development officer of Avacta, added: “The relocation of Avacta’s Therapeutics division to Scale Space in the heart of Imperial College’s White City Campus is a transformative milestone for our business, as we take the next steps towards developing our innovative oncology pipeline and improving our ability to bring these innovative therapies through to patients.

“This new location gives Avacta access to world class facilities, increased opportunities for collaboration and access to a significant talent pool to take the business forward.”

Scale Space opened in July 2020, a joint venture between Blenheim Chalcot, a digital venture builder, and Imperial College London. It is part of the broader White City Innovation District, home to more than 140 companies.

Avacta has not commented on how it has helped employees adapt to the move.

New tenants are already lined up for Avacta’s former site, the Cambridge Independent understands.

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