Epistem Plc

Epistem Plc

May 20, 2013 02:00 ET

UK-Norwegian Collaboration Aims to Develop a New Living Skin Equivalent Testing Model for Testing Inflammatory Responses

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - May 20, 2013) - Epistem (LSE:EHP), the UK biotechnology and personalized medicine company with expertise in skin biology and delivery of dermatological testing services, and ScandiDerma, a Norwegian company with expertise in developing new dermatological ingredients from biomass, today announced that they aim to develop a new in vitro human living skin equivalent model for testing inflammatory responses.

This is a novel method that will add to the field of dermatological testing as a whole and help create more activity in extracting high value compounds from biomass. The collaboration is made possible through the UK's innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board, and Innovation Norway following a successful application for funding in the "Sustainable high value chemical manufacture through industrial biotechnology" competition.

Matthew Walls, Epistem CEO commented "The collaboration with ScandiDerma presents an exciting opportunity to leverage Epistem's strong scientific background in skin biology and inflammation to address the shortage of robust human dermatology models for testing inflammatory responses.

"For ScandiDerma this is an important milestone in building up our competence around test-systems and how to rapidly determine good lead candidates from our bioprospecting activities" Ingebjørg Pernille Nedal, CEO ScandiDerma

The project will last from May 2013 to March 2014 and will run from the project leader Epistem's facilities in Manchester UK and ScandiDerma's facilities in Barents Biocenter, Tromsø, Norway.

Notes to Editors

ScandiDerma is a Norwegian company specialized in research and development of new cosmetic ingredients derived from bioprospecting of species derived from the arctic climate. Beyond R&D activities ScandiDerma also have their own high end skin care line on the market called Skin Science. For more information please visit www.scandiderma.com.

Epistem is a biotechnology and personalised medicine company commercialising its expertise in epithelial stem cells and pharmacogenomics in the areas of dermatology, oncology, gastrointestinal and infectious disease. Epistem develops innovative therapeutics, biomarkers and diagnostics alongside providing preclinical services to drug development companies. Epistem's core expertise is focused on the regulation of adult stem cells located in epithelial tissue which includes the skin, hair follicles, gastrointestinal tract, breast and prostate. Epistem also has a range of proprietary amplification (RNA and DNA) technologies for use in drug discovery, development and diagnostics.

Technology Strategy Board is the UK's innovation agency and works to create economic growth by ensuring that the UK is a global leader in innovation. Sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy. For more information please visit www.innovateuk.org.

Innovation Norway is the Norwegian Government's most important instrument for innovation and development of Norwegian enterprises and industry. Innovation Norway support companies in developing their competitive advantage and to enhance innovation. Norwegian enterprises have access to a broad business support system as well as financial means. By combining local industry knowledge and international networks with the business ideas and the motivation of entrepreneurs, the foundation for new successful businesses is created. For more information visit www.innovationnorway.com.

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