ABSCINT is developing single-domain antibodies for disease diagnosis through imaging.
Brussels, Liège, September 25, 2023 - ABSCINT has secured EUR 3 million for its technology platform that enables rapid targeting and visualisation of specific molecular markers throughout the entire body via a PET scan. ABSCINT is actively developing radiopharmaceutical diagnostics based on single-domain antibodies, to guide the selection of the right treatment, at the right time for oncological, cardiovascular, and immunological diseases. The company has clinical stage programs in both oncology and cardiovascular diseases. This additional investment, provided by Noshaq, Qbic, UZ Brussel, Kazoku, Trasis, Wallonie Entreprendre (WE), family offices and individual investors, positions ABSCINT to initiate Phase II Clinical Trials for the ABSCINT-HER2 program focused on (metastatic) breast cancer.
Leen Limbourg (Life Sciences Noshaq): “We are dedicated to support our portfolio companies in their pursuit of improving people’slives. The closing of this EUR 3 million round proves that qualitative projects succeed to be refinanced despite the current harsh investment climate.”
Sara Vandenwijngaert (Qbic): “We are excited to continue supporting ABSCINT in advancing the clinical development of their HER2 imaging tool. This will allow them to further demonstrate the unique advantages of their product in reliably visualizing HER2, which has become even more crucial with recent changes in the breast cancer field.”
ABSCINT is strengthening its existing investors base (Noshaq, Qbic, UZ Brussel, Kazoku and Trasis) by welcoming WE, family offices and individual investors. This new round of financing provides ABSCINT with an additional EUR 3 million, enabling the company to initiate Phase II clinical trials with ABSCINT-HER2 for the detection of HER2 heterogeneity in (metastatic) breast cancers.
Koen Dewaele (CEO ADx NeuroSciences), who will take up the position of chairman of ABSCINT’s board of directors: “The cutting-edge technology (platform) of ABSCINT holds the potential to benefit the vast majority of metastatic breast cancer patients and to offer a substantial advantage in cardiovascular diseases. This is one of the reasons why I’m happy to step in as private investor and share my experience with ABSCINT and the board.”
Caroline Thielen (Investment Manager at WE Life Sciences ): “Bio-imaging and whole-body monitoring are becoming increasingly important with each passing day. We take pride in the presence of ABSCINT, a key player in this field, within the Walloon life sciences ecosystem. We enthusiastically endorse and support ABSCINT in their endeavour to create a positive impact on patients’ lives.”
Answering an unmet medical need – addressing HER2-low breast cancer
Breast cancer affects 1 in 7 women in Europe, and is a complex disease with multifactorial etiology. An overproduction of HER2 is a well-known cause, for which targeted treatments exist. Until the end of 2022, there were two relevant classifications: HER2-positive and HER2-negative. This meant that 55% of breast cancer patients, namely those with only moderately increased HER2 expression, were categorized HER2-negative. Hence, these were excluded from HER2-targeted treatment options. Very recently this large group of patients has been classified under a new category, HER2-low, which makes them eligible for a newly developed HER2-targeted therapy. This evolution substantially expands the number of patients who could experience improved outcomes.
As is the case with any targeted therapy, accurate testing and patients’selection are essential to identify those who would benefit from the treatment. Especially in HER2-low, this is complicated since a significant proportion of breast cancers (11–40%) exhibits heterogeneous HER2 expression. This results in some tumour lesions with HER2 expression and others without. In essence, biopsy results, which currently serve as the diagnostic standard, depend on the specific and limited tumour tissue selected.
ABSCINT firmly believes that whole-body imaging of HER2 offers a solution. The company has developed ABSCINT-HER2, a diagnostic approach that visualizes all cancer lesions expressing HER2 throughout the body. This approach overcomes the diagnostic challenges caused bytumour heterogeneity and will be evaluated in upcoming Phase II Clinical Trials.
Karine Clauwaert (CEO ABSCINT): “With the approval of therapies for HER2-low patients the ability to properly map HER2 expression in the body has become extremely important. ABSCINT-HER2 enables a better characterisation and determination of the HER2 status of tumour lesions. It fills us with joy and pride, because a precise diagnosis is paramount for treatment optimization."
For more information: abscint.com