Advanced Oncotherapy plc (LON:AVO) goal is to deliver an affordable and novel PT system, called LIGHT, based on state-of-the-art technology, developed originally at the world-renowned CERN. The complex assembly of its first LIGHT accelerator in Daresbury has been completed and demonstrated to generate a full-energy proton beam (230MeV) required to treat deep-seated tumours. AVO is now working with its clinical partner, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHB), to commission the treatment room and prepare for regulatory certification. This significant de-risking of the project paves the way for further commercial deals.
- Strategy: Advanced Oncotherapy is developing a compact and modular PT system, which is affordable for the payor, financially attractive to the operator and generating superior patient outcomes. AVO benefits from technology know-how developed by ADAM (CERN spin-off), and relies on a world-class supplier base.
- Key milestone: AVO has been assembling its first full-energy LIGHT system at Daresbury, piecing together about 1,500 components. It has successfully accelerated the proton beam to 230MeV for treating deep-seated tumours, a major milestone that significantly de-risks the project.
- Next steps: AVO’s clinical partner, UHB, will now begin commissioning the treatment room and continue to define the protocol that will be used to treat first patients in 2H’23. Also, AVO is working with UHB to co-ordinate some of the US and EU regulatory processes in order to get formal certification of LIGHT.
- Risks: The commissioning and validation process for treating patients is important and well-established, but it can also be laborious, and much of it is outside the control of AVO.
- Investment summary: After some years in development, Advanced Oncotherapy is close to the finishing line with its first fully operational LIGHT system accelerator. The goal is to have a pipeline of installations to satisfy the pent-up demand and bring down the cost of PT. This announcement represents a major milestone and significantly de-risks the whole project, and provides comfort to potential customers regarding deliverability. Consequently, it paves the way to signing more commercial deals