Lausanne, Switzerland –June 7, 2013 – Diagnoplex SA, a developer of molecular diagnostics for colon cancer and Debiopharm Diagnostics SA, part of the Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical group of companies Debiopharm Group™, with a focus on the development of prescription drugs that target unmet medical needs, including oncology and companion diagnostics, today announced that Diagnoplex has secured 1.3 million Swiss francs from a financing round led by Debiopharm. Other investors include Neomed and Initiative Capital Romandie. The funds will be used to help Diagnoplex obtain CE marking (European Conformity) for Colox, a non-invasive blood-based test for the early detection of colon cancer. The company also wishes to prepare a comparative clinical trial with the screening test that should allow for patient reimbursement. Early detection of colon cancer and subsequent intervention by colonoscopy will have an important impact on the prevention of this cancer that has a high mortality rate. Indeed, it has been demonstrated that survival rates improve up to 90% when colorectal cancer is detected early. Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in men (663 000 cases, 10.0% of the total) and the second in women (571 000 cases, 9.4% of the total) worldwide.
“We are very pleased to announce the renewal commitment of Debiopharm, who led this round. This financing will allow Diagnoplex to continue its development and to progressing in establishing a collaboration for the commercialization of its diagnostic test,” commented Stavros Therianos, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer and founder of Diagnoplex.
“The early screening of colon cancer is key. It is tomorrow’s personalized medicine. We are proud to contribute to the progress of such an entrepreneurial and innovative company such as Diagnoplex,” said Thierry Mauvernay, Delegate of the Board of Debiopharm Group.
About Diagnoplex Product
Diagnoplex’s lead product, Colox®, is a convenient and minimally-invasive blood test developed for the systematic screening of colorectal cancer. The gene signature underlying Colox® has been designed to detect early and advanced disease stages with outstanding results and reliability. Colox® leverages the information from nucleic acids carried by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). PBMCs are instrumental for tumor-host interactions, the so-called “host response”, and are involved at the earliest stages of tumor formation. Our ability to screen for the host response enables us to detect colorectal cancer risk at the earliest and even pre-cancerous stages. For more information about Diagnoplex, please visit: www.diagnoplex.com
About Debiopharm Group™
Debiopharm Group™ (Debiopharm) is a Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical group of companies with a focus on the development of prescription drugs that target unmet medical needs. The group in-licenses, develops and/or co-develops promising biological and small molecule drug candidates having reached clinical development phases I, II or III, as well as earlier stage candidates. It develops its products for global registration and maximum commercial potential. The products are out-licensed to pharmaceutical partners for sales and marketing. Debiopharm is also active in the field of companion diagnostics with a view to progressing in the area of personalized medicine. Debiopharm independently funds the worldwide development of all of its products while providing expertise in pre-clinical and clinical trials, manufacturing, drug delivery and formulation, and regulatory affairs.
In order to bring about synergies with its core business, Debiopharm Diagnostics SA invests in start-ups, mainly in the field of molecular diagnostics due to the growing importance of personalized medicine, but also in other fields that help sustain entrepreneurship. For more information about Debiopharm Group™, please visit: www.debiopharm.com