NI’s first cell therapy company strikes another six-figure deal


VascVersa, an award-winning regenerative medicine spin-off from Queen’s University Belfast, has completed its second round of seed funding, raising over £500,000.

The investment was made by the NI co-fund managed by Clarendon Fund Managers, QUBIS, the commercialization arm of Queen’s University Belfast, the Investment Fund for Innovation and the angel investors of the Halo & Business Angel Network (HBAN).

The funding complements the recent successful grant from VascVersa Innovate UK Biomedical Catalyst for an £800,000 project.

Timothy Allsopp, Stuart Gaffikin (Clarendon), Reinhold Medina, Aidan Courtney, Stuart McKeown, Alan Stitt, Christina O’Neill and David Moore

The Belfast-based company is developing a cell therapy product as a new treatment for vascular regeneration.

The latest investment will allow the company to accelerate the development of its breakthrough Angocyte technology. Angicyte promotes healing by creating new blood vessels, which improves blood supply.

Cell therapies are at the cutting edge of medicine and are recognized as a revolutionary new way to treat disease.

The company is coordinating research undertaken at world-renowned research centers in Belfast, London and Edinburgh to develop its novel cell therapy.

The first target is for ‘chronic non-healing wounds’, which include diabetic foot ulcers, but the technology will also be explored for other vascular diseases.

Christina O’Neill, CEO of VascVersa, said, “This investment is an important milestone for VascVersa. It will allow us to accelerate the development of our first product for diabetic foot ulcers and also to develop our technology for other vascular diseases. I am extremely grateful to all of our backers for their invaluable support throughout the development of VascVersa.

Highlighting the invaluable support, Aidan Courtney, Chairman of VascVersa, explained: “We have received tremendous support from our investors and Queen’s University Belfast, which will enable the company to expand its research facilities in Belfast. and to develop new products based on its revolutionary technology.

“The technology, which builds on 20 years of research at Queen’s, has the potential to tackle a wide range of conditions for which clinical care is currently both costly and inadequate. VascVersa has the ambition to develop a new generation of treatments and to profoundly improve the lives of many people suffering from chronic diseases.

Stuart Gaffikin, Investment Manager at Clarendon Fund Managers, added: “Co-Fund NI is delighted to continue to support VascVersa and its team as it progresses the development of its regenerative cell therapy product, Angicyte, for be used as a treatment for diabetic foot ulcers. as well as other vascular diseases. We look forward to playing our part in helping the company through its early development and hope to see it grow successfully in the near future.

David Moore, Chief Investment Officer at QUBIS, commented: “QUBIS is delighted to help the VascVersa team build on the Biomedical Catalyst award with this funding round.

In conclusion, Oisin Lappin of the Innovation Investment Fund said, “The visionary technology that Christina and the VascVersa team are bringing to market will have a lasting impact on the lives of patients. This round of funding, coupled with support from Innovate UK, will help sustain them on this journey.

VascVersa is led by an experienced scientific and management team with expertise in vascular and stem cell biology.

The company is currently working on an Innovate UK funded project in collaboration with Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult, the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service and Queen’s University Belfast to develop its Angicyte therapy.

The start-up was created after his team took part in ICURE, a UK government-run program that seeks academic health research that has commercialization potential. It previously received funding from Innovate UK.


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