Antwerp, 25 January 2016 – HistoGeneX, a laboratory group specialising in research and development of biomarker tests for cancer, secures capital from the venture capital company Waterland to further develop its activities in Belgium and abroad.
HistoGeneX supports pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the process of developing, approving and monitoring new cancer drugs by developing and carrying out biomarker tests. Biomarkers are specific genes, proteins or other molecular variations that can be detected in patient tissue and blood samples. With its biomarker tests HistoGeneX is helping, in the context of clinical studies, to identify those patients in whom a drug is more or less likely to contribute towards the healing process. This approach, known as personalised medicine, avoids a situation whereby expensive cancer drugs are prescribed to patients who can be pre-identified as ‘non-responders’. The use of biomarker research in clinical studies therefore helps to individualise treatment, improve patient quality of life, and assist pharmaceutical companies in effectively targeting their R&D efforts, and is being encouraged by governments who are looking for a more efficient solution to ever-increasing social security costs.
HistoGeneX (www.histogenex.com), established in 2001, is run by founders/pathologists Mark Kockx (MD, PhD) and Dirk Hendriks (PharmD, PhD). HistoGeneX, with a current workforce of 90 highly qualified scientific employees, is recognised around the world for its high-level scientific knowledge and technology in the field of cancer research and biomarkers. In recent years, HistoGeneX has experienced strong growth thanks to its scientific expertise, integrated process approach and the increasing use of biomarker tests in clinical trials of new cancer drugs by pharma companies. In order to further develop its growth strategy in the future, also at a global level, HistoGeneX has entered into a financial partnership with Waterland. Waterland will provide HistoGeneX with funding and support the company in its further growth and development. This development will include investment in a new laboratory site in Antwerp (see photo below) and the expansion of laboratory activities in Chicago and Shanghai.
Laboratory currently under construction in Antwerp.