Braveheart Investment Group plc (AIM: BRH), is pleased to provide the following update on Paraytec, a company within the Group’s investment portfolio.
As reported in the Half-Yearly Report on 15 November 2021, the Paraytec team has engaged Sagentia International, to assist with the development of our test cartridge.
The design, production and supply of a competitively priced test cartridge is critical to the realisation of the full commercial potential of the Paraytec test. Paraytec are very pleased that design analysis suggests the production cost will be less than £2 per cartridge.
Similarly, the projected manufacturing cost of the CX300 instrument, required to analyse the patient specimen and provide the test result, is likely to be in the region of £1,500 per instrument. This relatively low cost means that CX300 instruments could be offered for a nominal charge with a minimum initial purchase of cartridges, a marketing and business model successfully pursued by printer manufacturers, razor blade manufacturers and others.
As previously indicated, the Paraytec team will commence a prospective clinical study early in the new year, followed by a longitudinal study. Discussions with potential commercial partners and acquirers are now continuing in some depth, with some prospective counter parties having completed a third round of such meetings. The Braveheart board continues to assess what is likely to result in the best outcome for shareholders, whether it is from the potential sale, partnership or retention and full development of the technology.
Omicron: The Paraytec and Sheffield University team are confident that the test will work with Omicron and other variants, as Paraytec’s test to detect the COVID-19 virus uses antibodies to attach a specific fluorescent dye to the surface of each virus particle. The antibodies used in the test have been selected to recognise the viral Spike protein. While mutations in the Omicron variant give rise to over 30 amino acid changes in the Spike protein, all of these occur in a region of the protein which is distinct from that recognised by the antibodies selected for the Paraytec test.
Paraytec has commenced the development of a blood-based test for the identification of microbial pathogens which are causative agents in the development and emergence of sepsis. The test will be based on the existing CX300 platform.
In the first instance, the sepsis test will focus on discriminating between the presence of E. coli, Pseudomonas and Staphylococcus. These combined species account for over 50% of all sepsis cases in the UK. The test will be developed in a similar way to the COVID-19 test, in this case rapidly and specifically targeting these bacterial species and labelling them with one of a number of fluorescent dyes.
The CX300 platform will also be developed further to discriminate between the various wavelengths of light emitted from distinct fluorescent dyes, and to accommodate the volumes of fluid involved in a standard blood test, typically 5 -10 millilitres.
Bladder Cancer Test
In parallel with the above work, a screening process will be used to identify antibody molecules that discriminate between normal and cancerous bladder cells for the bladder cancer test. The team will identify a panel of antibodies that recognise bladder cancer cells, while avoiding the need to identify specific bladder cancer biomarkers.
As with the test for sepsis, the bladder cancer test utilises Paraytec’s existing CX300 platform, which will be adapted for screening the typical volumes of urine that would be collected from patients in a clinical setting.
For further information:
Braveheart Investment Group plc
Tel: 01738 587555
Trevor Brown CEO
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