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36Kr First Release | “Extra-Avatar” helps patients test drugs, organoid innovation company “Danwang Medical” receives tens of millions of angel round financing

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Recently, Danwang Medical Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd., an innovative medical company, announced the completion of an angel round of tens of millions of yuan in financing. This round of financing was led by Kaifeng Venture Capital, leading the health follow-up investment.

Danwang Medical is engaged in the development and application of organoid technology, focusing on the field of accurate tumor diagnosis and treatment, focusing on the clinical development and application of organoid technology, providing patients with new technologies and treatment plans for personalized diagnosis, and providing accurate, Efficient and high-quality organoid service platform.

Relying on the self-developed organoid technology platform, Danwang Medical has optimized the establishment of the organoid culture standard process and quality system for clinical diagnosis and drug screening, and has carried out organoid related clinical verification work with a number of top three hospitals.

The funds raised in this round of financing will be mainly used for the strategic layout of Danwang organoid standardization system construction, product development and upgrading, and commercialization.

“Avatar Outside”

The organoid technology that Danwang Medical Center focuses on is a three-dimensional culture technology that cultivates the patient’s autologous tissue in vitro into a spatial structure with similar organ functions.

Clinical application prospects of organoids

Judging from the current market performance, there are two major application scenarios for organoids:

1. Clinical patient drug screening: Because organoids and patient tissues are similar in structure and function, the patient’s response to drugs can be simulated in the laboratory, with low cost and high throughput, which can efficiently achieve drug screening. It is equivalent to trying the drug in vitro to find the best treatment plan before the drug enters the human body. It is also known as the “in vitro avatar” mode of patient testing. This shows great application potential in the field of precision medicine.

2. Provide a service platform for new drug research and development: Approximately 85% of preclinical drugs fail to develop after entering clinical trials, causing huge costs and losses. Therefore, sufficient potency evaluation of candidate drugs before clinical trials is of great value for the development of late-stage drugs and reducing costs. As the most concerned emerging technology, organoids have gradually become the new favorite of pharmaceutical companies’ research and development due to their advantages in cost, throughput, and reproducibility of reactions in the body.

Regarding the clinical application scenarios of organoids, Danwang Medical currently divides its business model into three directions: one is to provide testing services for clinical patients, the other is to provide a new drug research and development service platform for pharmaceutical companies, and the third is to transform its own superior technology into formation The organoid technology products of the three directions can form a complete closed-loop system.

Dr. Hua Guoqiang, founder of Danwang Medical, said: “At present, Danwang Medical has successfully established multiple organoids and tumor organoids of corresponding tissues, including bowel cancer, stomach cancer, pancreatic cancer, lung cancer, bladder cancer, etc. This financing will accelerate Danwang tumor organoids The establishment of clinical prospective verification test and organoid standardization system”.

Professor Hans Clevers, the father of international organoids, joined

For testing organoid platforms, the most important evaluation criterion is the consistency of test results and clinical efficacy. This requires technical reserves, clinical resources and a lot of time to achieve. Danwang has been planning to carry out clinical validation trials for organoids since its establishment. Early data has been published in the top international journal Cell Stem Cell. Stanford’s Calvin Kuo commented in the journal that the research “lays out a new paradigm for precision medicine. The road was leveled.” In China, Danwang Medical has cooperated with several top three hospitals to promote clinical testing, and cooperated with famous universities such as Fudan University and Chinese Academy of Sciences in scientific research.

For pharmaceutical company R&D platforms, how to find the most suitable model for evaluating drugs is an important step in achieving preclinical drug development. To perfectly realize the service function of organoids to pharmaceutical companies, at least two points are needed: one is a diversified organoid reserve with complete information, and the other is quality stability and repeatability. Danwang Medical is the first company in China to propose organoid quality standards and is also the leading company in promoting quality system construction. At present, Danwang Medical has completed the storage of nearly 1,000 organoid samples and completed the first phase of the standard system and quality construction. This system has also attracted the attention of international pharmaceutical giants.

Professor Hans Clevers, the father of international organoids, joined Danwang Medical as the founder and CSO, which highlights the company’s technological leadership. Professor Hans Clevers is a master scientist in the field of adult stem cell and organoid technology. He is a member of the Royal National Academy of Sciences of the United States and the United Kingdom, and a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences. Professor Hans Clevers discovered that Lgr5 is a marker of intestinal stem cells, and successfully established a 3D organoid culture system for intestinal stem cells in vitro, opening up the research era of organoids as disease models.

Professor Hans Clevers, founder of Danwang Medical, said: “The founding team of Danwang Medical has nearly 10 years of organoid technology accumulation, and has deep attainments in organoid-based precision medicine and regenerative medicine. This is also what I joined when I joined. Danwang’s reason.”

The organoid culture technology used by Danwang Medical is derived from the research and development results of the founding team and transformed the standardized quality requirements of implantation companies. It is currently the most recognized technology system in the industry. At present, the success rate of organoid culture of Danwang Medical has reached the highest level in the world.

“Since 2009, organoids have been used by more and more researchers and pharmaceutical companies in the research and development of precision medicine and drugs due to their own technical model advantages. Organoids have a high degree of similarity with tissues in the body. Functional drug testing will provide patients with more accurate companion diagnostic results, and will inevitably promote patients’ personalized and accurate drug use into the era of NGD (Next Generation Diagnostics). China has the advantages of rapid development of organoids, such as sample advantages and huge The patient group waits.” Professor Hans Clevers said.

In terms of the core team, Li Junqiang, founder and CEO of Danwang Medical, has served as the general manager of the reagent and consumables division of Hong Kong Gene Co., Ltd., the vice president of Silodi, and the co-founder and vice president of Zhiben Medical. The founder and CTO, Dr. Hua Guoqiang, is a Ph.D. from the Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, a postdoctoral fellow at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Institute, and a professor at Fudan University School of Medicine. The founder and CSO Professor Hans Clevers is the “father of international organoids”, a member of the Royal National Academy of Sciences of the United States and the United Kingdom, and a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences.

A new solution to the “golden track”

As described above, the organoid technology developed by Danwang Medical is mainly used in the precision medicine market. Precision medicine has risen to a “national strategy”, and the country plans to invest 60 billion yuan in precision medicine by 2030 to push the industry into the fast lane. According to data from BBC Research, the global precision medicine market will reach US$105 billion in 2020, and it is expected that the global precision medicine market will grow at a rate of 15% per year.

In terms of clinical patient medication testing, a widely developed technology is gene sequencing, while organoid technology provides a new solution in another dimension. “Organoid technology and gene sequencing are in a complementary relationship. Both technologies have their own application scenarios. Gene sequencing distinguishes patients by gene mutations, and organoids distinguish patients by response to drugs,” Danwang Medical founder and CEO Li Junqiang said. The clinical application scenarios of organoid technology include neoadjuvant therapy and postoperative adjuvant therapy guidance for early and mid-stage cancer patients, and drug selection guidance for advanced patients.

Another major application scenario of organoid technology is in the service field of pharmaceutical companies. At present, pharmaceutical companies around the world are targeting the Chinese market. Every year, thousands of new tumor drug pipelines in China enter clinical trials. Organoid technology can be used for the development and development of new drugs. Declare to provide assistance. According to the latest data released by the World Health Organization, 19.29 million new tumors occur globally each year, while 4.57 million new cancers occur in China, accounting for 23.7% of the world’s total. It is estimated that the domestic market size may reach 100 billion. With the continuous emergence of drug pipelines, clinical and patient demand for individualized treatment is increasing, and the market space will continue to grow.

Li Junqiang, founder and CEO of Danwang Medical, said: “Danwang Medical is committed to the innovation and clinical application of organoid technology, and will uphold innovation to drive corporate development and accelerate the clinical application of organoids. This round of financing will be used to accelerate the standardization of organoids. System construction, quality standards establishment, and clinical drug diagnostic product research and development have helped Danwang Medical to build the best organoid technology platform in China and even the world.”

Investment logic

Dr. Huang Xin, managing partner of Kaifeng Ventures, said: “Organoids are the most concerned emerging life science technology in recent years, and their applications in the field of precision medicine have irreplaceable advantages. Whether in clinical applications or in the field of drug development , Organoid technology has huge commercial potential. We are optimistic about Danwang Medical’s global vision, standardized construction layout, R&D technology accumulation and business model innovation. Danwang Medical has a professional and efficient team, and international Hans Clevers, the originator of organoid technology, joins.”

Leading Health Management Partner Dr. Jialu said: “The invention and application of organoid technology has led to breakthroughs in precision tumor treatment and drug development. The leader believes that organoid models will surely become the new favorite in the medical and health field. Danwang Medical It has a huge advantage in the original depth of organoid technology and clinical trials, and is a leading company in the field of organoids.”

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