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Sense raises £12.3m for instrument-free molecular diagnostics

Oxford-based Sense Biodetection raises £12.3m to progress its pioneering instrument-free, point-of-care molecular diagnostic tests product.

Oxford-based Sense Biodetection Limited (Sense) has raised £12.3m to develop its portfolio of instrument-free, point-of-care molecular diagnostic tests, a pioneering new class of diagnostic product.

The company has raised £10.5m Series A investment co-led by Cambridge Innovation Capital (CIC) and Earlybird, with participation from Jonathan Milner and seed round investor Mercia Asset Management.

Concurrent with the investment, Sense has also secured a grant of £1.8m from Innovate UK.

The company plans to invest the new funds in the development and manufacture of a range of tests utilising its novel and proprietary rapid molecular amplification technology, targeting in the first instance infectious disease applications such as influenza (flu).

Sense CEO Harry Lamble commented: “We are delighted to secure the funding necessary to conduct the formal development of our first products. With the support of an exceptional new investment syndicate, Sense is positioned to become first-in-class and best-in-class in the exciting field of instrument-free molecular diagnostics and to realise our vision to transform healthcare through decentralisation.”

Mike Anstey of CIC commented: “We’re delighted to co-lead Sense’s Series A financing, enabling this ambitious company to develop its pipeline of transformational products. CIC’s investment strategy is to build high-growth companies with differentiated, innovative technology within the Cambridge ecosystem, and Sense is a great example of this.”

Rainer Christine from the Health Team at Earlybird commented: “We believe that Sense has created a disruptive solution for true point-of-care molecular diagnostics that will bring machine-free lab-quality results within minutes, and thus health benefits to an unprecedented number of patients. At Earlybird, we continue to be impressed by the founding team's commitment to its overall vision and are very excited to be working together to ultimately improve patient outcomes.”

Sense Biodetection raises £12.3m for instrument-free molecular diagnostics