KTN's online platform helps you to make the connections you need

 

The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) has refreshed its online platform to intelligently connect you to relevant events, funding, thought pieces and specialist staff to help your business innovate and grow.

You can discover content using your area of interest, from Defence Security to transport; from space to health – all major UK economic sectors are covered. Once you have selected your interests, using our intelligent tagging system, we will then display rich and relevant content related to your area, often from surprising sources.

An example might be new satellite technology from the space sector that is applicable in the agri-food sector. KTN-UK.co.uk will help you form these unusual and valuable connections.

All content on the platform has been carefully curated by our team of innovation specialists – not by an automated algorithm – so you can be confident that KTN is connecting you to the most relevant cutting-edge information.

 

The move also marks a closer alignment with our main funder, Innovate UK , with the website branding making a clear visual link. Knowledge Transfer Network is Innovate UK's innovation network partner, and also works with other funders to provide innovation networking services and fulfil our mission to drive UK growth.

We link new ideas and opportunities with expertise, markets and finance through our network of businesses, universities, funders and investors. From agri-food to autonomous systems and from energy to design, KTN combines expertise in all sectors with the ability to cross boundaries. Connecting with KTN can lead to potential partners, horizon-expanding events and innovation insights relevant to your needs.

Visit our people pages to connect directly with expertise in your sector.

Visit the KTN refreshed online platfom here

« go back

New company created to develop novel technology to treat diabetes

UK technology has potential to bring islet transplant therapy to thousands of patients with type 1 diabetes

The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult (CGT) and University of Aberdeen, UK, today announce the creation of Islexa, a new company developing a novel technology to produce laboratory grown islets, the organoids responsible for insulin production.

The technology could bring the option of an islet transplant to thousands more patients with type I diabetes. Currently in the UK, only 30-50 patients with hypoglycaemic unawareness can receive an islet transplant each year due to the low availability of suitable donor organs and the difficulty involved in extracting the islets.

Islexa technology works by reprogramming donated pancreatic tissue into fully functional islets which will significantly increase the number of patients who can receive the treatment.

An islet transplant can give patients effective, long term glucose control without the need of insulin administration.

Keith Thompson, CEO of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult and an Islexa director said: “This is a really exciting technology that has the potential to bring life changing benefits to these diabetic patients. We are delighted to be forming Islexa with the partners we’ve worked with so far on this project. The collaboration has already delivered promising results and the formation of Islexa will accelerate the development of these lab grown islets and ultimately get this potential treatment to thousands of patients.”

Professor Kevin Docherty, University of Aberdeen said: “The technology is based on converting pancreatic tissue into functional islets. This has an advantage over the use of stem cells as source material, since at the moment they generate only the insulin-producing beta cells. Islets are organoids that produce multiple hormones, including insulin, and donated islets are already effectively treating severe cases of type 1 diabetes. Having a hugely expanded supply of lab grown islets will enable us to significantly extend this established clinical treatment.”

The creation of Islexa follows successful results in pre-clinical studies on the technology and the company will hold future IP rights of the islet technology. The company will initially continue to focus on further pre-clinical development of the protocol for reprogramming the pancreas tissue into functional islets. The next stage is to take the technology into clinical trials in the next few years.

The expansion and reprogramming technology has been developed at the University of Aberdeen as part of activities led by a consortium with the support of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult. The consortium partners include University of Aberdeen, the Scottish Islet Transplant Programme, University of Edinburgh, and the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS). The consortium partners bring unique expertise in clinical practice and manufacture, and will continue to work closely with Islexa during the development programme.

Mr John Casey, Consultant Transplant Surgeon at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, and Lead Clinician for the Islet Transplantation Programme in Scotland said: “Islet transplantation can transform the lives of patients with type I diabetes, and in some cases can result in long term freedom from insulin injections with excellent glucose control. This exciting collaboration between the Scottish Islet Programme, Aberdeen University and the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult will allow us to rapidly develop the technology and treat more patients, more effectively.”