2020 Shortlist review

Back | Best Communication Award | Breakthrough of the Year AwardBest Technology Award
Mediscience Commentator of the Year Award | Capital Market Transaction of the Year Award
Most Significant Contribution to the Mediscience Sector AwardThe Emerging Star Award
 Chief Executive of the Year Award | Company of the Year Award 

The Emerging Star Award

Sponsored by Design Portfolio 


The Emerging Star will be a private or young public mediscience company that has demonstrable credibility in terms of business model/strategy, management team and financing. The winner's focus on innovation will also be key, with its technology/IP capable of significant market impact or disruption.

The Emerging Star may not be able to demonstrate too much of a track record, but it will be judged against the demanding criteria that exist for its quoted company peers. The purpose of this award is to broaden knowledge, exchange ideas and help private businesses understand what could be required of them in the quoted company universe.

The 2020 finalists:  


Achilles Therapeutics 


Hertfordshire-based Achilles Therapeutics was founded by world-leading experts in cancer evolution, bioinformatics and cell-based immunotherapies. The company brings together these disciplines to develop next-generation, patient-specific cell therapies that harness the immune system to destroy cancer cells.

Achilles uses DNA sequencing data from each patient, together with its proprietary bioinformatics platform, to identify clonal neoantigens specific to that patient, to enable the development of personalised cell therapies. The group has made rapid progress in this area, having moved from concept to clinic-ready in less than three years.

In September last year, Achilles closed a £100m Series B financing to enable the group to continue expansion of its solid tumour pre-clinical product pipeline.



Artios Pharma 


Cambridge-based Artios Pharma is an independent DNA Damage Response (DDR) company with a strong pipeline of novel cancer therapies in development.

Since launch in 2016, Artios has grown into a leading DDR company with an exciting pipeline of assets, a world-class R&D team and an enviable financial position following two successful fundraises from high calibre investors. The funds raised validate the group’s pipeline and provide the opportunity for DDR to yield new breakthrough oncology products.

Artios is collaborating with a global network of leading researchers in the DDR field, including Cancer Research UK, and the Francis Crick Institute, to maintain its leading position.



iTeos Therapeutics 


Based in Belgium, iTeos Therapeutics is a biotech company with a deep understanding of the tumour microenvironment. The group uses immunosuppressive pathways to design novel product candidates to improve the clinical benefit of oncology therapies.

iTeos’ innovative pipeline includes two clinical-stage programmes targeting novel, validated immuno-oncology pathways; an A2A antagonist targeting the adenosine pathway and an anti-TIGIT mAb targeting regulatory T cells. The TIGIT space is big news in the sector currently, with both Roche and Merck currently carrying out clinical trials.

In April this year, iTeos raised $125m in a Series B financing, which will be used to accelerate and expand the clinical development of its two lead products. 



Quanta Dialysis Technologies 


Warwickshire-based Quanta Dialysis is a technology-enabled provider of innovative dialysis products and services. The group aims to improve the lives of dialysis patients through its engineered solutions.

Quanta’s lead product, SC+, is a small, versatile haemodialysis system designed to provide greater freedom in the delivery of life-sustaining dialysis treatment. The group’s initial launch plans for SC+ were dramatically altered by the COVID-19 pandemic when it was asked to redirect all available SC+ devices for urgent use in ICU. Consequently, Quanta provided machines at four leading NHS Trusts and within one month had placed the total number of machines intended for roll-out in the first six-months of launch.