White blood cell ‘photocopier’ to reduce cost of next generation cancer therapies by 60%

Carlos Julià
Industrial Fellow 2018

Carlos Julià
Aglaris Limited and University College London

Carlos is developing an autonomous cell culture platform that can rapidly and cost-effectively manufacture white blood cells for advanced Cell and Gene Therapies (CGTs).

CGTs can be used as a new type of cancer treatment that work by extracting the white blood cells of a cancer patient, modifying them to recognise the cancer as a pathogen, multiply them, and reintroduce them to the patient’s body, where they can then attack the cancer cells. This therapy does not have the side effects of chemotherapy and could treat hitherto untreatable cancers. Currently, however, multiplying white blood cells is expensive, time consuming and it’s mainly done manually. Difficulties also arise around reproducibility and contamination.

Aglaris has developed a platform that works like a ‘photocopier’ for these white blood cells. Carlos is creating the ‘cartridge’ for the platform that is the environment in which the cells can grow. He anticipates that this could reduce the time of production by 30%, the cost by 60% and risk of contamination to zero. This will help CGTs to become commercially viable and a mainstream cancer treatment in the years to come.

"Aglaris has developed a platform that works like a ‘photocopier’ for white blood cells"

Carlos is an experienced scientist in the biotechnology industry with skills in cell culture process manufacturing, molecular biology and biotechnology. He has a BSc in Biotechnology and a MSc in Industrial and Environmental Biotechnology.

He is currently a Cell Culture and Bioreactor Process Development Scientist at Aglaris Ltd., where his main role is to deliver a fully automated bioreactor for the Cell and Gene Therapy industry that will enable the production of high quality, consistent and therapeutically-relevant cells for CGTs in reproducible and scalable manner.