Biopharma start-up co-founded by TCD professor raises $30m

Sitryx’s co-founders include Luke O’Neill, prof of biochemistry at Trinity college

Sitryx, a new biopharma start-up co-founded by a professor of biochemistry at Trinity College Dublin, has raised $30 million in a funding round to help it develop disease-modifying therapeutics.

The Oxford-headquartered company, which was only established earlier this year, is focused on regulating cell metabolism to develop disease-modifying therapeutics in immune-oncology and immunoinflammation.

Sitryx was co-founded by a team of world-leading scientists, including Luke O’Neill, prof of biochemistry at the School of Biochemistry and Immunology in TCD.

Mr O'Neill previously founded Opsona with fellow TCD scientists Kingston Mill and Dermot Kelleher.


Sotryx said it has assembled a portfolio of products that will address oncology and immunoinflammatory indications through differentiated chemistry approaches, including small molecules, proteolysis targeting chimera and topical formulations.

Immunometabolism is a fast-emerging area of investigation into the role of metabolic pathways in immune cell function. Changes to these pathways are seen as pivotal in the development of a number of severe diseases, including a range of cancer and autoimmune conditions. Correcting immune cell function and/or inhibiting tumour cell growth through immunometabolic therapies has the potential to offer key, complementary and highly differentiated approaches to treating disease.

The Series A funding came from an international syndicate that included SV Health Investors, Sofinnova Partners, Longwood Fund and pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

Mr O'Neill has a longstanding relationship with GSK, having taken a sabbatical to work at the company's research labs in Stevenage, UK.

“I’m delighted that my sabbatical in GSK has resulted in the formation of this new company in what is a tremendously exciting area,” he said in a statement.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist