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London, United Kingdom -Cytox Ltd,a UK-based neuroscience company that provides blood biomarker services to the pharmaceutical industry for Alzheimer's disease (AD) clinical trials, has announced completion of a pre-Series A funding round of GBP 600,000 ($ 1 million).
Proceeds will be used to advance commercialization of the company's testing services for AD and mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Cytox's biomarkers help confirm the AD diagnosis, predict which patients with MCI will convert to AD and provide information about individuals' likely responses to drug therapy.
Cytox's services enable companies to conduct more effective clinical trials with patients at the earliest stages of this devastating disease, offering the greatest hope of prevention and cure. The company's tests require only a single blood draw from the patient, which is significantly less invasive than tests requiring cerebrospinal fluid obtained by lumbar puncture (spinal tap) and quicker and cheaper than repeated imaging techniques (MRI).
Cytox's blood biomarkers have been validated for use in FDA trials in a recent clinical study, which was conducted in collaboration with the Oxford Project to Investigate Memory and Aging (OPTIMA) and supported by an Exceptional Grant for Research & Development from Advantage West Midlands. Future clinical trials are in planning to support FDA approval of the blood tests as a diagnostic test of dementia risk.
Management and existing UK investors were joined in the round by MASA Life Sciences LP, the first US institutional investor, and US angels, including Dr. Jim Foght, who joins the company as an advisor.
Commenting on the continued support from Midven Limited, the lead investor in Cytox through its investment from the Advantage Growth Fund, Roger Wood, Director of Midven, observed, "We are pleased to re-invest in Cytox. These are exciting times for the Company, which is now well placed to benefit significantly from its research efforts through the commercial launch of its clinical biomarker services."
Richard Hadden, CEO of Cytox, added, "I am delighted at the continued support we have enjoyed from existing investors and management and I welcome our new investors, who bring valuable pharmaceutical and diagnostic industry relationships in Asia and the USA."
A. Sinclair Dunlop, Founder and Managing Partner of MASA Life Science Ventures, LP, noted, "We are pleased to become the first US institutional investor in Cytox. The company's products and services for Alzheimer's address a great unmet need and offer a compelling investment opportunity, even in a difficult climate for biotech."
Richard Hanson, Grant for Research and Development Policy Manager at Advantage West Midlands, said "We are very pleased to have supported Cytox at an early stage of its development and welcome the confidence in its products and services which this significant new private sector investment demonstrates."