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GeneFirst wins Innovate UK’s Shanghai-UK competition for the development of non-invasive test for cancer
28 September 2017


Oxford, UK. GeneFirst Limited, the leader in delivering Next Generation Sequencing solutions for liquid biopsy testing, today announces the award of a two year grant of £350,000 from Innovate UK’s Shanghai-UK Challenge Programme to develop a non-invasive test for cancer gene mutations with Fosun Med-Tech.


The Innovate UK funding is a joint UK-Shanghai competition to identify new and novel products, processes or services drawn from any technology, engineering or industrial area. Under this highly competitive grant, GeneFirst will use its leading and proprietary ATOM-seq™ technology to deliver an NGS assay panel to detect cancer gene mutations in liquid biopsy, enabling clinically relevant cancer genotyping by non-invasive means. Fosun will undertake clinical evaluation and patient trials in China alongside GeneFirst’s UK evaluation. The resultant diagnostic panel will be both CE and CFDA certified for clinical use and commercialised under GeneFirst and Fosun’s commercialisation agreement for the Chinese market.  

Dr Guoliang Fu, CEO, GeneFirst, said:
GeneFirst Ltd is very pleased to be involved in this exciting venture in collaboration with Shanghai and Innovate UK.  The use of ATOM-seq™ technology is key to the development of an assay panel  which will overcome current NGS assay limitations of accuracy and sensitivity, enabling early diagnosis and the delivery of personalised medicine. Our grant and commercial partnership with Fosun will deliver both accreditation and revenue in the highly valuable Chinese market.”  

NGS & GeneFirst’s ATOM-seq™ technology
NGS has revolutionised genomic exploration and is driving the implementation of precision diagnostics. However, the sensitivity and accuracy of current NGS methods and associated cancer panels are compromised by sequencing errors.  This is a fundamental limitation, particularly when aiming to identify rare mutants in genetically heterogeneous mixtures, such as ctDNA. To overcome this limitation, GeneFirst developed ATOM-seq™ which  increases sensitivity and accuracy enabling  concurrent detection of multiple mutations.

About GeneFirst Limited
GeneFirst Limited is a molecular diagnostics company delivering proprietary NGS and PCR technologies and products in the fields of cancer diagnostics, infectious disease and personalised medicine. GeneFirst offers robust easy-to-use, sensitive, and affordable products to researchers, clinicians and drug companies to enable accurate diagnosis and the delivery of safe, effective and affordable medicines.


About Fosun 

Fosun Med-Tech, is a subsidiary of Shanghai Fosun Changzheng Medical Science Co., Ltd. (“Fosun Pharma”, stock code: 600196.SH, 02196.HK) , Shanghai, China.

Established in 1994, Fosun Pharma is a leading healthcare group in the People’s Republic of China. Fosun Pharma strategically covers important segments of the healthcare industry value-chain, including pharmaceutical manufacturing and R&D, healthcare services, medical diagnosis, medical devices manufacturing and agent, as well as pharmaceutical distribution and retail.


For more information please contact:

Winnie Wu
Chief Operations Officer
+44 (0) 1865 407 098

Sarah Coombes
Marketing Executive
+44 (0) 1865 407 400

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