Nanostart AG Marks Entry Into Asia As Lead Investor In Singapore's Biomed Start-Up Curiox


Nanostart AG, a nanotechnology investment company based in Germany, is taking an investment position in Singapore-based Curiox Biosystems, with a 16.5 per cent investment in the start-up.

A spin-off from Singapore's Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN), part of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Curiox holds a patented technology platform in miniaturized aqueous bioassays for drug discovery and other life sciences applications. According to the company, its ready-for-market technology allows researchers to conduct bioassays significantly faster and cheaper with lesser material, while maintaining the same level of flexibility and convenience as conventional platforms. It reduces the amount of material and reagent required by up to a thousand times, while simultaneously reducing reaction time by ten times. This slashes the time needed to run certain tests by more than 60 per cent and reduce consumable costs by nearly 90 per cent.

Curiox's target customers are research labs and high-throughput screening facilities in life sciences and drug discovery where bioassays are a necessary part of the research process. In particular, the U.S. represents Curiox's largest potential market with more than 12,000 suitable academic and government labs, which spent $14.3 billion on lab instruments, consumables and reagents in 2005, and more than 14,000 industrial pharma and biotech labs, which spent $37.4 billion in 2005. Curiox's technology comprises a chip, upon which the reagents are added, mixed and incubated, and a bench-top station, which automatically completes the rinsing process. Industrial customers will also be able to profit significantly from the reduction in costs for reagents as well as the savings in time.

For Nanostart AG, the investment in Curiox marks its first in Asia and is of strategic importance. Nanostart is investing in Curiox as the lead investor and is thus assuming an active role with its investment managers in the ongoing development of the company, jointly with Exploit Technologies

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