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Stella-Biomedica

Stella Biomedica is a spin out company from the world renowned Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Warwick.

Our vision is to develop an ultra-sensitive cancer blood test that will enable the early diagnosis of cancer, the optimisation of cancer treatment and reduce the number of deaths from cancer. Stella Biomedica will also provide an anti-cancer drug screening service for pharmaceutical companies. This will provide a valuable revenue stream which will be utilised by the company to develop the cancer blood test.

Cancer is a health issue on a huge scale. Over a quarter of all deaths in the UK are due to cancer, with 270,000 cases diagnosed each year. Furthermore, cancer is on the increase with the number of cases diagnosed in the UK is expected to reach 370,000 by 2020. Worldwide, 10.9 million cases of cancer are diagnosed each year, with 6.7 million people dying from the disease. Financially, the cost of cancer is also huge. The 1.2 million cases of cancer in the USA in 1999 cost a total of $107 billion. Our cancer blood test will allow a diagnosis of cancer to be made earlier, enabling treatment to commence earlier, saving lives and saving money. Similarly, our cancer blood test will improve the monitoring of cancer treatment by confirming when the cancer has been eradicated and reducing deaths due to cancer recurrence.

The European market for cancer diagnostics was worth $523 million in 2004 and is predicted to be worth $885 million in 2011. An ultra sensitive test that gives a definitive diagnosis will make a large impact on this market since current tests are insensitive and non-diagnostic. Similarly the market for drug screening is large, with a $26.4 billion spend on drug development in the USA in 2004.

In the next two years Stella Biomedica will establish its drug screening service and develop the cancer blood test. In April 2008 the clinical trial will commence and regulatory approval will be obtained. This will be followed by test sales in 2009, with an exit via a trade sale in 2010

Proof of concept funding of �30K has already been obtained and funding of �100K is currently being raised for development of the cancer blood test and identification of cancer biomarkers. This is being sought as a �50K equity investment which will be matched by �50K from the Spinner Matched Investment Fund. In April 2008, a second round of funding of �400K will be raised to finance the clinical trial.