ProAxsis (www.proaxsis.com), the Belfast-based diagnostics company, today announces that it has been awarded funding for a high impact development project from the Northern Ireland Department for the Economy. The company will immediately initiate the £322,000 project, which will be coordinated via the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK as part of the recent Innovate UK SMART Grants competition, to create novel monitoring tools to predict abnormal coagulation in COVID-19 and other illnesses.
Speaking about the project, Dr David Ribeiro, CEO of ProAxsis, commented:
“The impact of the coronavirus pandemic continues to be felt throughout the World. ProAxsis is keen to continue utilising the company’s unprecedented expertise in active protease biomarkers to maximise the diagnostic and monitoring tools available to the healthcare professionals treating the virus, as well as the researchers seeking to develop new drug treatments. This grant award will enable us to significantly expand the global understanding of the role of abnormal coagulation in COVID-19.”
Dr Ribeiro added:
“We’re extremely grateful to the NI Department for the Economy for co-funding this critical work, and for supporting the continuing expansion of ProAxsis’ R&D activities in Northern Ireland.”
East Belfast MP Gavin Robinson, commented: “ProAxsis have established themselves as a leader in diagnostics. The Department’s financial commitment to their innovation is a significant sign of confidence in their global leading work. As the world continues to understand, tackle and treat coronavirus, this research will firmly place Belfast at the heart of finding a solution.”
Any enquiries concerning ProAxsis’ work can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
ProAxsis Limited is a global diagnostics company, based in Northern Ireland, with a specific focus on active protease biomarkers. The company currently commercialises activity-based immunoassays targeting Neutrophil Elastase (NE) and Proteinase 3, as biomarkers of lung infection and inflammation in chronic respiratory diseases such as COPD, cystic fibrosis and bronchiectasis.
This technology has been translated into a point-of-care test (NEATstik®), to enable ongoing monitoring of active NE levels. Recently published data has shown that measuring active NE levels using NEATstik® enables identification of patients with airway bacterial infection and those patients at highest risk of suffering pulmonary exacerbations over the subsequent 12 months.
The company has significantly expanded its product portfolio, via the recent in-licensing of a novel bone health assay from the University of Geneva, and a COVID-19 serology assay from AstraZeneca.
In addition to proteases, the company also has significant expertise in the measurement of other inflammatory biomarkers, including IL-6, IL-8 and TNF-alpha. Grant-funded R&D funded projects for a variety of targets remain a key area of focus.
Aside from the provision of assays, ProAxsis can offer sample analysis at its purpose-built laboratory facility in Belfast and is currently supporting a number of pharmaceutical company-sponsored Phase I, II and III clinical trials.