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Apr 30th, 2014
How to turn a European Commission research project into a 2M€ VC’s backed-up promising start-up?
Microfluidic technologies dedicated to In Vitro Diagnostic and Pharmaceutical Research are really promising. These technologies are poised to sharply grow during the next 5 years at a CAGR of 28%, outpacing the MEMS business growth by a factor of 2, not speaking of semiconductor business…
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The market & technology report named “Microfluidic applications in the pharmaceutical, life sciences, in vitro diagnostic and medical device markets” recently published by Yole Développement  provides all the details of this growth. More information about this report here.

CellPly is taking full benefit of the potential of such markets. The company has been able to attract more than €2 million in seed capital investment to support development and completion of its diagnostics platform. Founded by Prof. Roberto Guerrieri and Dr. Massimo Bocchi, from the University of Bologna, CellPly exploits some of the results achieved within the COCHISE FP6 research project supported by the European Commission. Cellply also benefited of support actions from the COWIN initiative, lead by YOLE Finance, after the technology and know-how exploited in CellPly were detected by the COWIN team as “gold nuggets” with a strong potential for commercial exploitation.
CellPly aims at determining ex-vivo patient’s response to oncology therapeutics. CellPly's technology is based on microdevices, analytical instruments and software for data generation. The investors who participated to the seed-round, one of the largest Italian seed investments, are a group of business angels members of Italian Angels for Growth (the main Italian business angels association), Zernike Meta Ventures (through Ingenium Emilia Romagna II fund), and Atlante Seed, a fund of the Intesa Sanpaolo Group.

According to Mr Benjamin Roussel, Activity leader MedTech at Yole Développement, CellPly provides an attractive solution to improve the efficiency of cancer treatment.
Indeed this solution as a companion diagnostic will help oncologists in selecting the best appropriate drug depending on patients’ profile. CellPly will contribute both to enhance the treatment response and to reduce side effects.

Moreover as pharmaceutical companies are facing low R&D yield and stronger competition, the industry is evolving from a blockbuster business model towards a personalized medicine one. CellPLy could be also a useful solution to develop innovative drugs for targeted patients groups.

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