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29 April, 2021 - 09:56 By Tony Quested

Wind in its sails as Turbine scales cancer venture

Turbine, a Cambridge company developing a cell behaviour simulation platform to uncover targets for the most challenging cancers, has strengthened its top team.

Dr Mark Velleca has been appointed chair of the board. Professor Gordon Mills and Dr Klaus Hoeflich have joined the company’s Scientific Advisory Board. 

Drawing on their combined track record of five FDA approvals, 20 patents and over 1,000 publications, the advisers will help Turbine leverage its platform to advance its internal drug discovery programs.

Through a multidisciplinary team that unites machine learning and molecular biology, and the world's most intricate simulation of cellular signalling, Turbine can identify targets for cancers that have proven difficult with current experimental tools. 

Its Simulated Cell™ platform drives the drug discovery process from uncovering novel biological insights across known and novel targets, through identifying patients most likely to respond to the treatment and rational ways to stave-off resistance. 

“Over the last 16 months, our team has identified three targets – and advanced two to hit finding phase – against previously unexplored resistance mechanisms in DNA Damage Response” said CEO Szabolcs Nagy.
“Drs Velleca, Mills and Hoeflich joining us will help steer our programs as we grow our drug discovery capabilities.”

Turbine is a private European biotechnology company developing a simulation-based, scalable drug discovery platform. The Simulated Cell™ provides unique biological insights and novel targets for cancer, which the team is exploiting for its own drug discovery programs. 

The platform has been validated in several collaborations with pharmaceutical companies. Since its founding by bioengineer Kristof Szalay, cancer researcher Daniel Veres, and deep tech entrepreneur Szabolcs Nagy, Turbine has raised €9 million in seed funding from international investors in the US and Europe.

The backers include Accel, XTX Ventures, Boston Millenia Partners, Delin Ventures, Atlantic Labs and o2h Ventures.

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