MedCity Executive Chair Dr Eliot Forster has been announced as the new chief executive officer of Immunocore, a leading Oxford-based biotech company focused on the discovery and development of novel cancer therapies

Dr Forster, who will continue to lead MedCity, takes up the role at Immunocore after four years at Creabilis, a company developing treatments for skin disorders.

Congratulating him on his new appointment, Kit Malthouse, London’s Deputy Mayor for Business and Enterprise and Chair of MedCity’s Advisory Board, said:

“Eliot Forster has been absolutely invaluable in establishing MedCity’s mission – to grow the thriving life sciences cluster in London and the south east of England. He has a vast depth of personal knowledge and experience of the international healthcare and pharmaceutical industry. I’ve no doubt that he will be an excellent leader for Immunocore. The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and I remain truly grateful to Eliot and look forward to a long, ongoing association with him.”

Set up in 2008 and headquartered in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, Immunocore is a privately owned clinical-stage biotechnology company targeting cancer and other serious diseases with T Cell Receptor technology, which uses the body’s own immune system to find and kill diseased cells. It has entered into major partnerships with leading companies including GlaxoSmithKline, AstraZeneca, Genentech and Lilly.

Dr Forster says:

“This is a fantastic time to be part of the UK’s life sciences ecosystem, which is in a sustained period of ambition and creativity. Immunocore is a really exciting company deservedly attracting international attention for its novel technologies addressing cancer and viral disease, and I’m delighted to be joining the team.”

Executive Chairman of Immunocore Dr Jonathan Knowles says:

“I am delighted to welcome Eliot Forster to Immunocore as Chief Executive Officer, , and a member of the Board. His significant drug development experience will be invaluable to Immunocore as we continue to deliver within our partnerships and advance our proprietary ImmTAC pipeline.”

Dr Forster has been Executive Chair of MedCity since April 2014, when it was launched by Mayor of London Boris Johnson to promote and grow the life sciences cluster of London and the greater south east. He brings almost 25 years of experience in biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, including as CEO of Creabilis, CEO of Boston-based Solace Pharmaceuticals, Head of EU Development and of Development Operations in the EU and Asia at Pfizer, and a number of non-executive posts in biotech companies.

He holds a PhD in neurophysiology from Liverpool University and an MBA from Henley Management College.