SimuGen Announces Successful Proof of Concept Study
News Jan 30, 2007
SimuGen has announced the successful completion of its proof of concept study, on time and under budget.
The study was undertaken to test whether the prediction of human toxicity using in vitro methods could be improved by the use of modelling and mathematical techniques. The study, using human liver cells and gene expression profiling, found that SimuGen’s methods would predict different types of liver toxicity with 90% sensitivity.
SimuGen began operations in early 2006 with the completion of its seed funding to conduct the proof of concept study. In addition to equity funding from business angels, the company also secured a Research grant from the East of England Development Agency.
The company is now seeking further funding to take the prototype product developed during the proof of concept study to full development and commercialisation.
Chairman, Andy Allars, commented “We didn’t want to spend huge sums on this idea until we had some evidence that it worked. Now we have that evidence, we are in a position to complete development and get to the market in months rather than years."
"Our work with human liver cultures has only scratched the surface of the possibilities for this technology, we would like to explore other organs and investigate stem cell models. The EU Cosmetic Directive and REACH legislation is opening up huge opportunities in assessing the safety of chemicals,” said Allars.
As genome editing technologies advance toward clinical therapies, they are raising hopes of a completely new way to treat disease. However, challenges need to be addressed before potential treatments can be widely used in patients. To tackle these challenges, the National Institutes of Health has launched the Somatic Cell Genome Editing program, which has awarded multiple grants including more than $3.6 million to assess the safety of genome editing in human cells and tissues.