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Financing › Details

Amply Discovery–SEVERAL: investment, 2024Q2 seed financing round £1.4m PLANNED NOT YET REALISED 2/24


Period Period 2024-02-12
Organisation Money taker SEVERAL
Products Product AI-based drug discovery / AI-based drug development
  Product 2 venture capital

Amply Discovery Ltd.. (2/12/24). "Press Release: Amply Discovery Raises £1.4m in Innovate UK Grant Funding to Tackle Complex Diseases".

Belfast company now preparing for seed investment round later in 2024

Belfast-based techbio company AMPLY Discovery Limited announced today that it has raised over £1.4m in grant funding to develop new drug products using its proprietary AI-driven drug discovery platform.

The company, which is a spin-out from the Queen’s University Belfast, was established in 2021 to commercialise an innovative drug discovery platform developed by researchers in the School of Biological Science at Queen’s.

AMPLY is powering the discovery of cures for cancer, metabolic, and infectious diseases through AI and synthetic biology, making the discovery of new drugs more predictable and less expensive. Its technology platform has been the subject of more than a decade of research and development.

The company is currently focused on two flagship R&D programmes which will provide technical validation for its development platform. The first programme, focused on RNAi therapies to tackle highly genetically mediated cancers, has been awarded £835,000 by Innovate UK and Innosuisse to develop a new RNAi therapy for Acute Myeloid Leukaemia.

The second programme, focused on inhaled antimicrobial therapies to fight multi-drug resistant (MDR) lung infections, has been awarded £602,000 by Innovate UK to develop a new nebulised antimicrobial product for MDR-TB.

AMPLY raised its initial pre-seed funding in May 2022 and is planning to raise a further £1.4m in a full seed funding round in the second quarter of 2024. The company said the new grant awards further demonstrate the progress it is making towards building a new type of highly efficient platform for drug discovery.

Dr Ben Thomas, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder said: “This new funding will further help AMPLY to realise its ambition of democratising the discovery of new therapeutics by building a transformative Drug Discovery Studio which leverages the raw power of evolution to unearth new medicines from nature’s huge untapped reservoir.”

Dermot Tierney, Chief Operating Officer and Co-Founder said: “As a drug discovery studio which discovers and develops de novo first-in-class drug candidates for downstream out-licensing this funding will significantly enhance our pipeline of license-ready assets.”

Mark Beards, Non-executive Chairperson said: “AMPLY Discovery is a fantastic example of another quality Life Science company emerging from the buoyant Northern Ireland ecosystem.”

AMPLY is a techbio company, a new breed of biotech company which leverages software and technology to solve complex biological problems.

The company’s unique AI platform is like ChatGPT for molecule discovery, with amino acids and oligonucleotides as its building blocks. Synthetic biology is used to synthesize and validate these AI-discovered candidates in a real-world setting.

The challenges of complex disease are rendering existing disease treatments ineffective, and AMPLY is helping to solve difficult issues like the global health threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) by democratising drug discovery through AI and synthetic biology. AMR threatens to render ineffective mankind’s current portfolio of antibiotics to fight infections caused by bacteria, viruses and fungi. Its team is using AI and machine-learning techniques to discover new anti-infective products.

AMPLY works with a network of disease and biotech partners to help advance its programs, its MDR-TB project is a collaboration with St George’s University London and its AML project is being run with a Swiss-based biotech partner.

AMPLY’s existing investors include Co-fund NI, which is managed by Clarendon Fund Managers and supported by Invest NI and the British Business Bank, QUBIS Limited, the Helix Way Partnership, Techstars, and angel investment from members of the Halo Business Angel Network (HBAN).


Photo caption: AMPLY Discovery co-founders Dr Ben Thomas (right) and Dermot Tierney.

For more information please contact:

Symon Ross at MCE
T: +44 (0)7827524668

Notes to Editors:

AMPLY Discovery Ltd is a spin-out from the Queen’s University Belfast that employs unique machine learning and AI techniques to discover novel drugs. These molecules, such as RNA, proteins and peptides, offer significant value as new biopharmaceutical drug products which target hard-to-treat diseases.

Queen’s University Belfast is a public research university located in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Queen's is a member of the Russell Group of research intensive UK-based universities. Queen’s has a long history of conducting innovative and world-leading research with partners in industry, government, public policy, social and healthcare, the arts and the voluntary sector, nationally and internationally.

Co-Fund NI is part of Invest NI’s Access to Finance suite of loan and equity funds as well as a partner of the Regional Angel Programme, delivered by British Business Investments. The fund can provide co-investment in deals typically valued between £150,000 and £2million and up to £1.75million over a series of investment rounds. Co-Fund NI is managed by Clarendon Fund Managers. Invest NI’s support is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2021) Programme.

HBAN is the Halo Business Angel Network which operates across Ireland and Northern Ireland. HBAN facilitates more than 60 investments every year. Its investors consider a wide range of sectors, with deals particularly prevalent in ICT (38%), life sciences & MedTech (28%), engineering & manufacturing (14%) and food, beverage & agriculture (12%).

The Helix Way is an advisory, training and investment partnership which supports academics and established businesses to accelerate their research, technology and product ideas through a variety of pre-accelerator and innovation programmes.

QUBIS Limited is the investment fund linked to the Queen’s university Belfast. The objective of the fund is to provide an early source of finance for spin-outs to begin their commercial journey as soon as possible.

Techstars is a globally recognised accelerator and pre-seed investor that provides access to capital, mentorship, and other support for early-stage companies. It is the largest startup network in the world with over 9,000 founders and 54 programs in 14 countries.

Innovate UK drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas. We connect businesses to the partners, customers and investors that can help them turn ideas into commercially successful products and services and business growth. We fund business and research collaborations to accelerate innovation and drive business investment into R&D. Our support is available to businesses across all economic sectors, value chains and UK regions. Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation. For more information visit

Record changed: 2024-02-21


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