Vivacta secures further £4m financing to develop piezofilm
10 Dec 2010
Vivacta Limited, a UK company that has developed a
revolutionary platform for point-of-care testing, closed a further £4
million financing round last month. The current shareholders, HBM
BioVentures, IDInvest Partners (formerly AGF Private Equity), Spark
Ventures and Viking, all participated in the round.
The company previously raised US$5.25m in 2006, US$12m in 2007, and
US$4.5m in 2009.
Vivacta’s innovative piezofilm technology platform enables the
development of a new generation of point of care diagnostic products
achieving very high sensitivity and wide dynamic range, equivalent
to laboratory testing. The test utilises whole-blood samples and
requires only a finger prick sample, taken with a credit-card sized
device that both samples and analyses the blood, providing
actionable results within 10 minutes.
Vivacta has successfully developed a diagnostic test for thyroid
stimulating hormone (TSH), one of the most widely prescribed
laboratory tests and the industry gold standard for immunoassays by
which major diagnostic companies measure the performance of
Vivacta’s TSH product demonstrates the high sensitivity, wide
dynamic range, precision and speed to result enabled by the
technology. Vivacta is also developing a multiple analyte
cardiovascular diagnostic test for use in the emergency room and
acute care settings, where there is a compelling need for rapid
diagnosis of possible heart attack and related time-critical medical
Future applications include diagnostic tests for prostate cancer,
diabetes, sepsis, acute renal and infectious diseases.
Dr Tim Carter, Chief Executive Officer of Vivacta and co-inventor
of the piezofilm platform technology, said: “Our technology has the
potential to revolutionise point of care diagnosis. This fundraising
enables us to continue to maximise the potential of our platform and
demonstrates the commitment of our investors in the Company.”
Vivacta’s technology has been used to measure both small and
large molecules and the goal ultimately is to measure nucleic acids.
Target applications include diagnosis of infections, sepsis and
stroke, companion diagnostics, therapeutic drug monitoring,
vaccination status and therapeutic effectiveness monitoring such as
the detection of anti-drug antibodies, as well as personalised
Vivacta collaborates with healthcare companies to develop point
of care diagnostics for these applications.
Vivacta’s patented system is simple to use, cost effective, and
is packaged within a small, self-contained cartridge with all
reagents dried down. The unique cartridge system reduces the amount
of patient blood required and removes the need for red cell
separation. Single and multiple assay cartridges and readers have
been developed. The multiple assay system allows simultaneous
testing of several different analytes or the same analyte more than
once to further enhance dynamic range and sensitivity.
Cartridges are inserted by the user into a compact reader which
provides data rapidly to users at the point of care and
simultaneously to remote locations such as laboratories within
decentralised healthcare networks. The system is designed to meet
the criteria for CLIA waiver.
Vivacta has a proven product development and manufacturing
process with a certified quality system. Its pilot facility for
manufacturing cartridges provides partners with smallscale
manufacture and process development resource. Vivacta has
established a strong, independent IP base with a portfolio
comprising over 10 patent families.