Pronec Ltd

Life Sciences
Aim of funding: 
HMRC Advance Assurance received: 

Pronec Ltd


Pronec Ltd seeks to develop a new class of cancer therapy that causes tumours to simply die, using proprietary peptides. The Company has identified a lead candidate molecule that causes necrosis of a wide range of tumour cell lines in culture, but does not affect normal cell lines. Cancer cell necrosis refers to death of cancer cells within a tumour. This new class of compounds is protected by GB and international patent applications. 

Most current cancer drugs try to inhibit tumour cell growth, preventing them spreading, and kill the cells by inflicting chemical damage or by directing the hosts immune system against them. Pronec’s approach is uniquely different from that of the standard anti-cancer drug development described above. It works by depriving those cancer cells living “at the edge” of their energy needs, its proprietary peptides selectively cause the cancer cells to run out of energy and die whilst sparing normal cells. Because the energy changes are general to all cancer cells, Pronec’s peptides are not only cancer-selective but also potentially provide a long-sought-after global cancer therapeutic.  

In recent studies, breast cancer, bowel cancer, melanoma, non-small cell lung cancer, ovarian cancer and bladder and prostate cancer have all been shown to respond to the company’s peptides in a similar way at closely similar doses in human cancer cell lines.


More than 20 cancer tumour types are being treated with one or more of the 70 new cancer treatments that have been launched in the past five years, with the sustained surge in innovative therapies driving the global oncology market to US$107 billion in 2015 [1]. The Company states that annual global growth in the oncology drug market is expected to be 7.5% – 10.5% per annum through to 2020, reaching US$150 billion.  

There are various anticancer agents under development, which mainly rely either on targeting single members of a multiplicity of cell signaling molecules, or augmenting immunological attack on the cancer cell. It is the view of the Board that there is still an urgent need for different targets and a new approach to this lethal disease, which frequently develops resistance to treatment. Virtually all the major pharmaceutical companies are researching new molecular targets and novel approaches in this regard.  


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