ICEX-Invest in Spain supported the establishment of DestiNA in Spain through the Technology Fund
DestiNA Genomics Ltd., a spin-off from the University of Edinburgh, has successfully completed an investment round of €1.2 million that will allow it to develop its technology aimed at marketing innovative diagnostic tests for cancer and infectious diseases.
DestiNA Genomica S.L., a subsidiary located in the PTS in Granada, will be responsible for carrying out much of the R&D&i, validation and sales and marketing programmes during this new phase.
The investment was led by Grupo Vitro S.A. (Spain) and also taking part were the Scottish Investment Bank (investment vehicle of Scottish Enterprise), Old College Capital from Edinburgh and private investors from the UK, Spain, Belgium and Saudi Arabia.
One of the key elements that allowed the closing of this round of investment was the access to financing offered by the ICEX-Invest in Spain aid programme within the framework of the Technology Fund.
As a result of the funding, DestiNA set up part of its R&D activities in Andalusia and developed activities with Spanish partners which eventually invested in DestiNA’s share capital.
Dr David Whitcombe, currently non-executive Chairman of DestiNA and founder of the molecular diagnostics company DxS Diagnostics, which was sold to Qiagen (Germany) in 2009, explained that “this capital will allow the development of our technology with HybriSpot Master Diagnostic S.L. platforms, thus initiating a very exciting period with a highly trained and efficient team”.
DestiNA will work with Master Diagnostic over the coming months at its facilities in the Health Technology Park (PTS) in Granada to integrate its revolutionary chemistry, which is able to detect unlabelled DNA and RNA with high specificity, in the HybriSpot diagnostic platform in order to detect mutation panels in multiplex format related to infectious diseases and cancer.
Given the increasing incidence of cancer and infectious diseases, patients and health professionals are demanding the creation of forms of diagnosis without false positives, at a lower cost, which can allow earlier diagnosis of diseases as well as their monitoring, thereby reducing the costs to health systems. DestiNA, together with its business partners, is developing products and technologies to meet these demands.
“We are excited about the capacity of DestiNA technology to improve various tests using our platform, but beyond that, we see other important opportunities for its technology, so we are delighted to make this investment,” said Jorge Bensadón Belicha, International Director of Grupo Vitro and Investment Director at DestiNA.
DestiNA’s technology came about as a result of the invention, which is protected by the patent currently approved in the US, Europe and China, by Juan J. Diaz Mochón and Mark Bradley, both founding partners of DestiNA currently engaged in research activity at the Centre for Genomics and Oncological Research (GENYO) in the PTS in Granada and the University of Edinburgh, respectively.
About DestiNAGenomics Ltd.
DestiNA Genomics Ltd. is a spin-off from the University of Edinburgh founded in 2010 to market its revolutionary chemical-based technology for the enhanced detection of nucleic acids and their mutations. In 2012, the company incorporated a fully owned subsidiary in Spain, DestiNA Genomica S.L. The aim of the company is to develop various diagnostic tests for cancer and other diseases, and the rapid detection of pathogenic bacteria and viruses. DestiNA is developing its patented “SMART Nucleobase” in collaboration with Master Diagnóstica and other commercial and academic partners. Website: http://www.destinagenomics.com
ICEX-Invest in Spain Technology Fund
The Technology Fund is a special item within the FEDER funds by the European Union given over to promoting business R&D&i in Spain during the period 2007-13.
Invest in Spain is participating in this Operational Programme by promoting inward investment with a high R&D&i component, encouraging investment in plants, equipment, human resources and technology.