CYTOO, a company that specializes in cell-based assays (Grenoble, France), has joined up with Cellectis bioresearch, the specialist in genome customization and commercial subsidiary of Cellectis (Alternext: ALCLS), and the CEA, the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, to develop new high-value cell-based assays for drug development and toxicology.
The project, named ETICS, will focus on the development of cell-based assays, which will be commercialized as kits, comprising cells genetically modified by Cellectis bioresearch and CYTOO's micropatterned supports. By controlling the expression, the architecture and the 2D and 3D environment of the cells, thus mimicking in vivo conditions of the tissue they derive from (liver, heart...), these assays will have much higher relevance to discover better and safer drugs.
OSEO, the French agency financing innovation, is providing euro 7.6 million in funding for the ETICS project for the next 5 years, including euro 4 million for CYTOO, euro 2.9 million for Cellectis bioresearch and euro 0.7 million for the CEA. This project could generate over euro 600 million for the consortium in ten years.
"The three partners of the ETICS project have complementary know-how and synergies in the key domains necessary for the success of such a project," said Francois Chatelain, Chairman and CEO of CYTOO.
"This funding will enable us to extend our product offering and to gain market share from our major North American competitors," stated Marc Le Bozec, Cellectis bioresearch CEO. "I would like to congratulate the ETICS partners and OSEO teams for the quality of work accomplished, which we believe will yield an important advancement in the development of new drugs."