The Science

Pro-regenerative macrophages, engineered for more potent and durable anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic effects.

A world class foundation

Our work builds on more than a decade of world leading research conducted by Prof. Stuart Forbes and his group at the University of Edinburgh, in partnership with Prof. John Campbell at the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service. Together, the founding team have demonstrated the regenerative potential of macrophages, both in the lab and in the clinic.

Macrophages as regenerative cells

Macrophages are cells that belong to the immune system, and are commonly known for their ability to fight invading pathogens. However, several studies performed in the last fifteen years have identified a prominent role for macrophages in tissue repair. Macrophages in damaged tissue initially acquire pro-inflammatory functions, helpful for sterilising any wounds. They then clear the excess of dead or dying cells in the tissue, through a process called phagocytosis. Thanks to this process, they are able to change their identity, to become so-called pro-restorative macrophages. Pro-restorative macrophages can digest scar tissue, switch off the inflammatory response, and promote organ repair. Unfortunately, if the damage is prolonged, such as in liver cirrhosis, the macrophages lose their ability to become pro-restorative. Consequently, they fuel local inflammation, which worsens scar deposition and prevents organ repair.

 

At Resolution Therapeutics, we are developing a pro-restorative macrophage cell therapy to promote organ repair.

Macrophages in the clinic.

In the last five years, the Forbes lab in collaboration with the cell therapy group at the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS), led by Prof. John Campbell, have progressed a non-engineered autologous macrophage cell therapy into the clinic through the MATCH trial. This small-scale safety study, the results of which were published in 2019, demonstrated the promise of macrophages in treating patients with liver cirrhosis. Alongside recent advances that enable the manufacture and storage of enhanced macrophage products, and the ability to enhance their functionality through genetic engineering, the MATCH trial motivated the foundation of Resolution Therapeutics. A placebo-controlled Phase II trial run by the University of Edinburgh, MATCH II, has recently finished and early results have been published.

Manufacturing Process