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Glasgow biotech develops easy blood test for early cancer diagnosis, adds £3.5M funding

ClinSpec Dx

Earlier cancer diagnosis results in significantly higher survival rates, increasing the availability of treatment options and improving recovery chances and a better quality of life. 

Additionally, the blood test has the potential to indicate the type and severity of the tumour, allowing doctors and clinicians to prioritise and fast-track the most appropriate and effective treatments.

In this case, ClinSpec Diagnostics Limited (ClinSpec Dx), a spinout from the Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry at the University of Strathclyde, has developed a way of detecting cancer at an early stage using a simple blood test.

Secured £1.1 million

Recently ClinSpec Dx has secured additional funding of £1.1 million and reached its round two funding target of £3.5 million. 

The Glasgow-based cancer diagnostics firm bagged funding from Norcliffe Capital Limited, the University of Strathclyde, Eos Advisory, and the founders.

This funding round comes after securing £2.4 million back in September 2020, led by Mercia’s EIS Funds with Scottish Enterprise, SIS Ventures, Eos Advisory, and the University of Strathclyde. To date, the company has raised £5.1 million in funding. 

ClinSpec Dx
Image credits: ClinSpec Dx

Uses Dr. Matthew Baker method

Founded in 2016, the ClinSpec Dx blood test uses technology, based on the research of Dr. Matthew Baker at the University of Strathclyde. 

The ClinSpec Dx liquid biopsy simply analyses blood using infrared light, and the signals of cancer are detected in minutes by the company’s AI algorithms.

Mark Hegarty, CEO, ClinSpec Dx said: “Achieving the £3.5m target enables us to accelerate our plans. We will shortly complete our move into new lab and office facilities and increase staffing to 15, bringing forward key operational and commercial appointments.

“Our two clinical studies on detection of brain cancer have been successful and papers are in the draft for publication over the next 6 months. This, plus the development of our multi-cancer platform covering the most common cancers, will form the bedrock for Series A investment in 2022, with the target of commercial launch in 2024.

“We are also delighted to have further strengthened our leadership team by the appointment of Prof David Onions of Norcliffe Capital to the Board of Directors.”

Professor David Onions, Adviser to Norcliffe Capital said: “The team at Norcliffe Capital are delighted to be supporting the next phase of development of Clinspec Dx. Early diagnosis of cancer is critical for effective treatment but can require complex and expensive procedures. Clinspec Dx has developed a revolutionary, rapid, diagnostic system for cancer that only requires a drop of blood. We were very impressed by the results from the clinical studies on brain cancer and the clear strategy of the company; first in widening the range of cancers being examined and then moving to clinical application of the technology after the Series A funding round next year.”