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Luxcel Biosciences, Axiogenesis AG and BMG LABTECH GmbH secure €2.5m European investment

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Three European technology SME’s, together with two internationally recognised research institutions, Oxford University and Imperial College London, have been awarded €2.5m funding from the European commission under the H2020 Fast Track to Innovation (FTI) pilot, to develop and launch a cell metabolism analysis platform, MetaCell-TM that is predicted to be part of routine in vitro cell biology and drug development.

The importance of advanced cell-based assays in preclinical drug discovery and development has risen significantly in recent years, with a major focus on cell metabolism and the use of models that better represent physiological and pathological conditions in cancer, cardiovascular and other diseases. This trend is not surprising considering 10-year timelines, steep costs associated with the development of new drugs (est. c. €2bn per drug) and the link between cell metabolism and drug failure.

Led by Luxcel Biosciences, the consortium will demonstrate a Gold Standard platform, comprising cell assays, disease models and services, together with high performance metabolism tests designed for use on laboratory standard instrumentation – the multi-mode microtiter plate reader.

“MetaCell-TM delivers a real alternative to expensive dedicated instrumentation, providing researchers with flexible, cost-effective access to tools measuring cell metabolism, bioenergetics and drug toxicity. We are delighted to partner with Axiogenesis and BMG LABTECH, who are recognised global leaders in iPSC-derived cell assays and advanced plate reader technology, to co-develop end-user solutions with direct impact on disease research and drug development” said Dr. Ian Hayes, Commercial & Operations Director, Luxcel Biosciences Ltd.

“We are excited to gain early access to this new platform and cell assays to complement our research. The system offers an easy to use format for studying metabolism that is not currently available”, said Professor Adrian L Harris, Oxford University Department of Oncology.

About Axio Genesis AG

Axiogenesis is a leading provider of commercial-grade in vitro differentiated cell types derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), along with validated assays which enable improved drug development. Assays for each cell type have been developed for advanced drug discovery, disease and tissue modeling, safety pharmacology, and in vitro toxicology applications. Axiogenesis’ cardiac products encompass hiPSC-derived Cor.4U® cardiomyocytes and vCor.4U ventricular cardiomyocytes used in cardiac safety and HTS applications as well as isogenic FibroCor.4U electro-competent cardiac fibroblasts used in tissue modeling. The neural cell portfolio includes Peri.4U peripheral neurons (for structural and functional toxicity assays, novel neurotoxin screening), Dopa.4U dopaminergic neurons (for neurodegenerative disease models, neurotoxicity screening), and Astro.4U astrocytes (for neuronal co-culture). Axiogenesis’ innovative and proprietary cell types and assays accelerate and improve drug candidate selection, lower costs and thus increase overall drug development efficiency.

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BMG LABTECH is at the forefront of technology offering innovative, high-quality, and reliable microplate readers for life sciences applications and high-throughput screening. The company is on a steady course of growth due to continuous development of innovative and unique technologies over the past 25 years. All BMG LABTECH microplate readers are conceived, developed, assembled, and tested entirely at BMG LABTECH headquarters in Germany. Since the establishment, BMG LABTECH has expanded to offer a worldwide sales and support network with offices in the USA, UK, Australia, Japan and France.

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