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3 January, 2016 - 19:13 By Tony Quested

Axol Bioscience surging towards £600k crowdfund target

Jonathan Milner

Cambridge UK life science innovator Axol Bioscience has passed the halfway mark to its £600k target on SyndicateRoom despite the intervention of Christmas and New Year.

The hot money is on the stem cell technology pioneer sailing past its target in a 10-week campaign that at the time of writing still had eight weeks to run. Axol is raising cash to rapidly accelerate revenue growth and global expansion as well as to support further product development. 

Axol provides access to human cells and related materials – critical reagents – to help its customers quickly and effectively advance their research.

The Nobel Prize winning IP behind the company will help reduce the need for animal testing, by producing highly validated human cells and critical reagents, such as media and growth supplements. It is already generating significant revenue, which is highly unusual for such a young biotech company.

SyndicateRoom CEO, Gonçalo de Vasconcelo, said: “It is unsurprising that Axol has hit the halfway point so early in its crowdfunding campaign. The company is already generating revenue and growing quickly and it is predicting dramatic expansion in line with the global cellular research markets.”

Axol’s expertise includes reprogramming donor cells, such as skin or blood cells, into different cell types - including stem cells, nervous system and cardiovascular cell types. These cell cultures are used to develop human cellular disease models for studying disease and drug mechanisms, such as the role of specific mutations, as well as being used to predict chemical toxicity during drug development.

Axol has already secured a roster of clients that includes Janssen, Pfizer, Lilly and Nestle, along with Harvard University, Kings College London, the University of Oxford and Aston University.

Archangel Dr Jonathan Milner, who founded Abcam – the fourth largest company on AIM by market cap – is Axol chairman and co-founder, with seasoned industry players such as Darrin Disley, CEO of AIM listed Horizon Discovery, already secured as investors. 

Cell biology research is rapidly changing, with researchers requiring a constant supply of cell types and genetic backgrounds. This means that Axol's quick access to human cell types of specific genetic background is increasingly essential for R & D. The global cell-based market predicted to be worth over $1.8 billion by 2020.

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Dr Jonathan Milner

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