Magnitude Biosciences: Revolutionising Research

Contract research organisation Magnitude Biosciences is projecting significant growth as it looks to tap into the multi-billion-pound nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industry, automate workstreams, expand its commercial team and increase its global footprint.

The biotech company, which spun out from Durham University and moved to NETPark in 2020, uses tiny nematode worms known as Caenorhabditis elegans – or C. elegans – to carry out pre-clinical drug development and academic research for clients in a range of sectors, including pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, agriculture, and health & nutrition.

As C. elegans nematodes have neurons, skin, gut, muscles, cognitive function, and other tissues that are similar in form, function and genetics to those of humans, Magnitude Biosciences can determine the effects of compounds on aging, longevity, neurodegeneration and reproductive health in just seven days and at a fraction of the cost of in vivo mammalian testing.

Using their proprietary imaging technology – WormGazer TM – Magnitude Biosciences can continuously monitor the effects of compounds on C. elegans over the course of the worms’ very short lifespan and generate a petabyte of rich data each week for multiple research areas.

Dr Fozia Saleem, who joined Magnitude Biosciences as CEO in October 2022, said the WormGazer TM software algorithm is akin to that used by NASA to track objects in space. “WormGazer TM allows us to track the worm’s every movement and understand how their health and behaviour changes over time,” she said.

“As scientists and institutes increasingly look to improve the population’s healthspan – that is, helping a young population age in a way that adds life to their years rather than years to their life – then our aim is to become the go-to clinical research company for screening thousands of compound libraries and novel lifestyle products.”

Magnitude Biosciences, which was founded in 2018 by biosciences expert Dr David Weinkove and physicist Dr Christopher Saunters, has grown its NETPark workforce to 19 employees, working in lab space and offices in both Plexus and Orbit.

In June 2023, it secured a Future Economy Investor Partnerships grant of almost £250,000 from Innovate UK, which was matched by an investment from the North East Innovation Fund, supported by the European Regional Development Fund and managed by Northstar Ventures Limited.

Fozia said the investment will help accelerate research and growth. “We expect to more than double the team in Sedgefield to 45 over the next two to three years, with a larger commercial team allowing us to expand our global footprint,” she said. “We also want to expand our current service offering to include new neurodegenerative and cognition assays and tap into the pharma, health and nutrition sector.”

With an ambitious five-year growth trajectory, Magnitude Biosciences intends to stay on NETPark. Fozia said the science park provides a conducive environment and a collaborative ecosystem that fosters innovation.

“There’s a thriving start-up community and many unique companies who are not in direct competition, and we regularly collaborate,” she said. “I’m excited about NETPark’s Phase 3 expansion, and I’d like Magnitude Biosciences to be part of that growth and, in time, one of the flag bearers with a purpose-built facility.”

Sarah Slaven, Managing Director of Business Durham, the business support service for Durham County Council, said: “By harnessing the resources and support provided by NETPark, with contributions from CPI and Durham University, Magnitude Biosciences is not only thriving but making enduring contributions to the field of biotechnology. Its journey exemplifies the vital role that collaborative research environments, which blend academic knowledge with practical application, play in fostering groundbreaking advancements in biotechnological innovation. The synergy between academia and industry provided by Durham University and CPI strengthens the foundation upon which pioneering biotechnological innovations can flourish."

If you would like to find out more about locating your business at NETPark get in touch or call 01740 625250

For more information on Magnitude Bioscience, see our services, or get in touch.

Related Resources

Case Study: Identifying a lead candidate for slowing ageing with Gerostate Alpha
GeroState Alpha is a pharmaceutical company, based at the Buck Institute for Research on Ageing in N...Read More
Case Study: Measuring efficacy to slow ageing for drug discovery biotech Five Alarm Bio
Five Alarm Bio, a UK drug discovery startup focussing on the underlying mechanisms of ageing to deve...Read More
The Nematode Corner: Unearthing Nutraceutical Discoveries
Welcome back to "The Nematode Corner," where we continue our journey into the extraordinary world of...Read More
The Nematode Corner: Powering Industry Progress
Welcome to the fascinating world of C. elegans, a microscopic nematode worm that holds the key to un...Read More
Case Study - AB Biotek works with Magnitude Biosciences to accelerate probiotic development
Download the full case study here and learn how AB Biotek and Magnitude Biosciences collaborate to d...Read More
Pharmaceutical company Lundbeck in collaboration with Magnitude Biosciences on innovative new platform to test interventions for neurodegenerative disease
Lundbeck collaborates with Magnitude on innovate platform to test neurodegenerative disease interven...Read More
Tiny Worms- Experiments Fast
David Weinkove, CEO of Magnitude Biosciences joins New Matter ...Read More
Case Study: Michelin & Magnitude Biosciences
Michelin, a Fortune 500 consumer good manufacturing company and the global leader in tyre manufactur...Read More
ELRIG Drug Discovery 2021
Take a look at our Poster from ELRIG Drug Discovery 2021: Automated Monitoring of C. elegans&nb...Read More
Frontiers in Aging: Applying C. elegans to industrial drug discovery
Just published in Frontiers in Aging: Applying C. elegans to industrial drug discovery...Read More
C. elegans to accelerate industrial drug discovery and address the costs and challenges of early preclinical research
Magnitude Bioscience CEO, David Weinkove, discusses the application of C. elegans to accelerate the ...Read More
Developing a System to Quantify Efficacy of Neurodegeneration Therapeutics Using Automated Monitoring of C. elegans
Check out our poster showing how we can quantify the efficacy of neurodegeneration models...Read More
C. elegans mobility decline
This video shows an automated method to quantify that decline developed by Magnitude Biosciences whi...Read More
Neuronal SKN-1B modulates nutritional signalling pathways and mitochondrial networks to control satiety
Neuronal SKN-1B modulates nutritional signalling pathways and mitochondrial networks to control sati...Read More
Chemosensory Neurons Modulate the Response to Oomycete Recognition in Caenorhabditis elegans
The Barkoulas Lab, including our own Michael Fasseas , find an Oomycetes recognition response in&nbs...Read More
UK SPINE Recording
Our CEO, David Weinkove, discusses the use of C. elegans and how they could be used in the...Read More
Microbiome SIG Webinar Series
Our CEO, Dr. David Weinkove, explains how healthspan readouts can be used to understand mechanisms i...Read More
Automated Imaging of C. elegans for Ageing, Neurodegeneration and Behaviour
How large scale non-invasive imaging of C. elegans to enable reliable measurement of Agein...Read More
C. elegans Automated Imaging Platform
Magnitude Biosciences presentation from ELRIG online 2020 on the use of C. elegans in pre-...Read More
C. elegans Automated Imaging in Drug Discovery
De-risking drug candidates ahead of rodent studies with a non-mammalian model for ageing, neurodegen...Read More
An overview of the use of C. elegans in longevity research including the genetic manipulation of animals.
An overview of the use of C. elegans in longevity research including the genetic manipulat...Read More

CONTACT US

Get in touch today to find out how we can support you
to accelerate your research