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Welsh Diagnostics Company Launches Tests to Transform Human and Animal Health

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A diagnostics company based in Wales is bringing two products to market that could transform both human and animal health. 

iOmics Ltd. is commercialising the outcomes of world-class research from scientists and researchers at Aberystwyth University to develop new rapid screening tests for cancer in humans and bovine tuberculosis in animals.

The new tests could save thousands of human and animal lives, significantly improve the wellbeing and welfare of people and animals, and save governments billions in healthcare, social and farming costs.

  • Cscreen+ will provide an annual screening test for lung cancer using lateral flow technology to identify high-risk patients even before the onset of symptoms.
  • bTBscreen+ is a rapid, point-of-use test for bovine TB based on lateral flow technology. It will accurately identify the presence of the disease in herds. It can also be used with other animals at risk from bTB infection, such as badgers, deer and camels.

The new tests have been made possible through the discovery of unique ‘biomarkers’ – molecules found in blood or other body fluids that can indicate the presence of a particular disease – by scientists working at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) at Aberystwyth University.

Their development has been supported by funding of around £2m, including investment from academics, founders, the Welsh Government Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarship (KESS) scheme, NHS Wales, and a £1m development grant from Innovate UK and the Canadian Government.

iOmics is now looking to raise seed funding to take the products to market.

A co-founder of the business is entrepreneur Ian Bond, who also founded Cardiff medtech company Bond Digital Health.

Mr Bond said:

In the fast-changing world of the 21st century, we face major new challenges in human and animal health, food and agriculture.

iOmics was set up to meet those challenges by turning world-class research into game-changing diagnostics.

Our first two lateral flow-based diagnostic tests will deliver easy-to-use, low-cost and rapid, accurate results without the need for laboratories, and will have huge impacts in human and animal health.

Professor Luis Mur, a partner in iOmics who led the research at Aberystwyth University, said:

We’re proud to launch iOmics as a made-in-Wales solution to global problems.

This enterprise helps move science out of the lab and into the hands of practitioners.

iOmics is also working on projects involving other human and animal diseases, including human tuberculosis, respiratory diseases, prostate cancer, and other communicable and non-communicable diseases.