– Strengthening of T cell research expertise to develop next-generation T cell therapies for patients with limited or no treatment options
ROTTERDAM, January 17, 2023 – Pan Cancer T B.V., a biotech spin-off from Erasmus MC dedicated to the discovery and development of next-generation TCR-T therapies against solid tumors, today announced the appointment of Dr. Rachel Abbott as Chief Scientific Officer.
Dr. Abbott will succeed Pan Cancer T co-founder Prof. Reno Debets, who will continue supporting the Company from his academic position as Head of the Laboratory of Tumor Immunology at Erasmus MC. Prior to joining Pan Cancer T, Rachel Abbott had been Senior Director, Head of TCR Pipeline and Dark Antigen Research at Enara Bio from March 2021 to January 2023. In this role, she was responsible for building and delivering on strategic research frameworks, with a particular focus on the discovery and validation of so-called dark antigens, i.e., unconventional cancer immunotherapy targets that arise from the aberrant transcription of normally silenced regions of genomic dark matter. Moreover, she focused on the identification of dark antigen-specific TCRs that can be advanced for therapeutic development. Before joining Enara, Rachel spent over 6 years at Adaptimmune, developing cancer-specific TCR T cell therapies. Her career at Adaptimmune started in the lab, before progressing into management, culminating in her role as Head of Pipeline Cell Biology. Previously, Rachel was a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham for seven years, where she investigated CD8+ T cell responses to Epstein Barr virus. She holds a DPhil, awarded for her structural studies on the complement system regulator CD55 and its ligands, and a MBiochem in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, both from the University of Oxford.
“We warmly welcome Rachel Abbott to our management team,” said Katrien Reynders-Frederix, CEO of Pan Cancer T. “Rachel has tremendous industry experience, including developing T cell therapies, leading scientific research teams and managing collaborations with big pharma and academic institutions. This knowledge will be very important for further defining Pan Cancer T’s scientific direction and execution.”
“I am honored to take over the position as Pan Cancer T´s Chief Scientific Officer,” said Dr. Rachel Abbott. “I would also like to thank my predecessor Prof. Reno Debets, who has done an excellent job in establishing the scientific foundation of Pan Cancer T, maturing it into one of the leading European TCR T companies. I am excited to build on this strong foundation. My goal is to further advance the next-generation TCR T therapeutics into powerful treatments for more patients and multiple solid tumors.”
Pan Cancer T was founded in late 2020 as a spin-off from Erasmus MC (Rotterdam, the Netherlands) to advance next generation TCR T cell therapies for hard-to-treat solid tumors. The Company’s approach includes two differentiating elements. First, it exploits unique targets for T cells that are exclusively and robustly expressed by multiple solid cancers. Second, it develops technologies that enhance the durability of the T cells. The Company has ongoing R&D programs to develop safe and effective adoptive T cell therapies amenable to large cohorts of patients with triple negative breast cancer as well as cancers of the bladder, ovarium, colorectum, prostate, skin, esophagus, lung, or brain. For more information, please visit: www.pancancer-t.com
3029 AK, Rotterdam
Dr. Ludger Wess / Ines-Regina Buth
Tel. +49 40 88 16 59 64 / +49 30 23 63 27 67