Dutch biotech company SkylineDx has received €20m ($21.9m) funding from Benelux investor Aat van Herk for a skin cancer diagnostic test.
SkylineDx states the investment will finance its market potential of more than $1bn per year, depending on their current progress in the melanoma field.
US-based medical centre Mayo Clinic discovered the melanoma test, which has been optimised and further developed by SkylineDx.
The diagnostic uses genetic information from primary melanoma cells along with patient and tumour characteristics to predict the metastases risk in lymph nodes.
This eliminates the demand for a removal surgery on the non-cancerous part of the lymph nodes. Up to 80% of such biopsies can be avoided, according to experts.
SkylineDx CEO Dharminder Chahal said: “With the financial requirements secured and professor Alexander Eggermont on board as our medical advisor, we can initiate the necessary clinical studies in collaboration with expert physicians, patient associations and other stakeholders, to get this test from bench to bedside and reimbursed.”
Eggermont serves as the general director of cancer centre Gustave Roussy in Paris and works in the melanoma field.
SkylineDx is focused on the development of data-driven gene signature-based diagnostics and machine learning algorithms to enable personalised therapy for patients.
Its portfolio includes MMprofiler test for the prognosis of multiple myeloma, which can measure the activity of 92 cancer genes (SKY92). SkylineDx received the European CE-IVD-Mark approval for MMprofiler in November 2015.
The company also offers Gesture machine learning algorithm to identify those with genetic similarities in their diseased cells who had different treatments.
It learns from the patient’s response to their treatment, creating a biomarker that can link genetic information from the diseased cell with therapy and enabling a diagnostic test to predict the most beneficial treatment for each patient.
SkylineDx’s AMLprofiler provides diagnoses of acute myeloid leukaemia. The test can also differentiate genetic forms of the disease to allow treatment decisions.