The investors in this Series B financing include Novartis Venture Funds, Consort Medical plc, LSP (Life Sciences Partners), BB Biotech Ventures, Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation, YFM Equity Partners and private investors.
The final tranche of the £16.9 million Series B investment will be used to complete the transfer to manufacture of the Atlas io™ system and file for European approval of the first test for Chlamydia. The io™ system is a highly novel molecular diagnostic system for the ultra-rapid diagnosis of a broad range of infectious diseases including Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) and Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs). It is based on a patent-protected electrochemical sensor technology that combines speed and accuracy, and removes any requirement for costly optical components.
In addition to deployment in hospital settings, the Atlas system will make it possible, for the first time, to carry out infectious disease tests in primary care clinics and GP surgeries that are as accurate as those carried out in hospital laboratories. This will enable clinicians to test and commence treatment within the same appointment and ensure much improved compliance, particularly in the area of STIs, where a significant proportion of patients fail to return for test results or follow-on treatment.
Dr John Clarkson, Chief Executive Officer of Atlas, commented: "We have made tremendous progress in the development of the io™ system since the initial Series B investment in July 2011 and we look forward to gaining regulatory approval for our first product, a Chlamydia test, around the end of this year."