Immuno-oncology is a relatively new area of medicine that focuses on the manipulation of the immune response to effectively target tumours.

Until recently, immunotherapeutic agents had provided very limited evidence of clinical success; however, over the last decade, we have witnessed a paradigm shift in the treatment of cancer. Now, many think immunotherapy should be considered alongside surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy as the fourth cornerstone of anticancer treatment.

Although still in its infancy, immunotherapy has been yielding some promising clinical data from checkpoint modulators. In 2011, Ipilimumab, a fully human monoclonal antibody against cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated antigen-4 (CTLA-4), became the first agent approved in the EU for the treatment of adult patients with un-resectable or metastatic melanoma. More recently, Nivolumab, an immunomodulatory compound that blocks the activation of program cell death 1 (PD-1), was approved for metastatic melanoma.

Understanding the immunomodulatory effects of your treatment(s) within the tumour microenvironment is of critical importance for progress on the path to the clinic, and questions on how these might play out in combination with other already marketed checkpoint modulators is exactly where Aquila can help.

Aquila has extensive in vitro and in vivo immunology, immuno-oncology and multiplex histology experience, which can be specifically tailored for any project. The suite of available immuno-oncology services and assays include but are not limited to:

• An Exhausted CD4+ T Cell Assay
• Human PBMC & T Cell Activation Assays,
Human Mixed Lymphocyte Reactions,
Human DC, Macrophage and Co-culture Assays,
• T Cell Killing Assay

All relevant to investigating compound mechanism of action for cancer immunotherapy.

Further human ex vivo patient assays are also in development and should be available later Q3 2017.

Please get in touch to discuss how Aquila can help you with your immuno-oncology, immunology or histology research needs. 

Endorsement by Paul Rennert, CEO of SugarCone Biotech an IO Key Opinion Leader

The immune checkpoint space was until recently devoid of really focused CRO activity, that is, having diverse modelling capability and careful benchmarking. However, Aquila BioMedical in Scotland, UK placed a solid bet on developing these capabilities around a year ago, and that effort is yielding a terrific suite of assays in both mouse and human cell systems, with multiple readouts, solid antibody benchmarking and careful controls. I like this very much, rich in functional data in a way that a binding assay simply can’t reproduce. Aquila BioMedical seeks to become a driving force in this area, and I like their chances very much.(


We’d be happy to discuss any service or product you may be interested in.

Aquila BioMedical Ltd.
Nine, Edinburgh BioQuarter
9, Little France Road
EH16 4UX

Tel: +44 (0) 131 658 5164