PARIS, Sept. 26, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- 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(1), 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."
About the "Industrial Strategic Innovation" Program from OSEO
The "Industrial Strategic Innovation" (ISI) program supports the emergence of European champions. It supports ambitious projects of collaborative innovation for the industry, carried by innovative medium-size companies (under 5.000 employees) and SMEs (under 250 employees). These projects hold a lot of promise: they aim at the commercialization of technological breakthrough products, and could not succeed without public support. The funding is usually comprised between euro 3 million and euro 10 million, in the form of subventions and reimbursable loans.
About Cellectis bioresearch
Cellectis bioresearch was incorporated as a subsidiary of Cellectis (Alternext: ALCLS) in June 2008. It provides life science researchers with ready- and easy-to-use tools for genome customization. These tools, based on sequence specific nucleases, enable the engineering of cells with optimized features for drug discovery, protein production and gene functional studies. The genome customization products and services can be purchased online from www.cellectis-bioresearch.com. Check the website for more information.
Follow Cellectis bioresearch on Twitter: http://twitter.com/genegineer
Cellectis improves life by applying its genome engineering expertise to a broad range of applications, including agriculture, bioresearch and human therapeutics. Cellectis is listed on the NYSE-Euronext Alternext market (code: ALCLS) in Paris.
For further information about Cellectis, visit our website at: www.cellectis.com.
Follow Cellectis on Twitter: http://twitter.com/cellectis
CYTOO is a distinctive Life Sciences Systems/Tools enabling company that currently offers a disruptive solution that brings robustness, sensitivity and powerful quantification to cell-based assays and High Content Screening (HCS). The technology offers exquisite control over the cells' microenvironment, leading to normalized cell morphology and behavior. CYTOO is engaged in developing, manufacturing and commercializing innovative products to the Life Sciences research community (industry and academia). The Company has tailored a portfolio of innovative products using its proprietary cell adhesive micropattern technologies to target first its fast growing High Content Screening and Analysis segment within the large cell biology market www.cytoo.com
This press release and the information contained herein do not constitute an offer to sell or subscribe, or a solicitation of an offer to buy or subscribe, for shares in Cellectis in any country. This press release contains forward-looking statements that relate to the Company's objectives based on the current expectations and assumptions of the Company's management only and involve risk and uncertainties that could cause the Company to fail to achieve the objectives expressed by the forward-looking statements.
(1) ETICS stands for "Evolved Tissue Inspired Cell Systems"