London-based Peptone nabs €2 million to help big pharma develop life-saving proteins

Peptone, a computational physics company that has built one of the world’s first protein engineering operating systems, has landed an approx. €2 million seed round. The round was led by Hoxton Ventures and supported by dRx Capital, a venture arm of Novartis Pharma AG, Founders Factory and a number of angel investors, and will be used to develop its groundbreaking technology and reduce the risk of failure in early stages of drug development. 

Founded in 2016, Peptone is changing the mindset of how big pharma companies approach the process of developing and engineering life-saving proteins, a fundamental building block to modern medicine, by prioritising the past failures of protein research on a large scale. The biotech company is accelerating protein biotechnology research thanks to its Protein Engineering Operating System (PeOS), which uses state of the art computational molecular physics orchestrated by AI.  

Peptone’s innovative technology sifts through millions of protein feature anomalies in order to assess the likelihood of a new protein failing, before suggesting the best route to resolution. This means that Peptone’s AI understands what will not work in order to support the faster and more affordable generation of new lab-based molecules, in a way that the Big Pharma industry has not seen before. 

Peptone’s team of physicists, structural biologists, computer engineers and mathematicians, led by physicist and founder Dr. Kamil Tamiola, have spent the past three years developing the foundations of PeOS. The company collaborated exclusively with NVIDIA, the global leader in supercomputing technologies and AI-solutions. Peptone’s PeOS was developed to handle massively parallel molecular simulations that were orchestrated and supervised by reinforcement learning algorithms. The core functionality of the platform is an automated search for non-obvious protein variants with desirable therapeutic properties and cost-effective manufacturability.

With protein therapeutic holding the promise of treating the most debilitating disorders, Peptone is in talks with key pharmaceutical industry players about future partnerships. 

Hussein Kanji, Partner, Hoxton Ventures commented: “We are backing Peptone because Kamil and Matt are mission-driven founders who’ve made tackling this extremely difficult problem their life’s work. They’ve made excellent progress to date in their early pharma collaborations, and we see in them the potential to build a category defining AI-company for the drug development industry. We’re excited to join them on this journey and think we will see a lot of great news from them in the not too distant future.”