Alexandre Paiva, Ana Rita C. Duarte, Ana Rita Gameiro and Marta Marques, LAQV researchers from the Bio(chemical) Process Engineering research group at FCT NOVA have been selected for the 2021 edition of the HiTech program. On the 14th of July at 14h30, the team will be presenting their project CryoDES in the closing session, that will take place online (registration here).
HiTech is a 14-weeks program that through training, advising, and mentoring supports research teams from Portuguese R&D organisations in translating cutting-edge technology and scientific discoveries into high-growth business opportunities.
About the project CryoDES:
Cell therapies are foreseen as next generation therapeutics for some of the diseases with highest global economic and social burden. The market for human cell therapies has been estimated to be 4.5 M€ in 2021 with an annual growth rate of 35%. Nonetheless this market is transversal to veterinary which represents a potential market of 1.1 M€. One of the key aspects for the success of cell therapies is cell preservation. Conventionally cells are cryopreserved with dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) an organic cryoprotectant that although being the gold standard, presenting high success rates, it is highly toxic and requires the cryopreservation at -196ºC, in a liquid nitrogen tank. Inspired in Nature, CryoDES is a technology able to inhibit the formation of ice crystals and hence to act as a CPA. These systems have proven to be biocompatible and sustainable able to replace the gold standard CPA, and presenting the same performance indicators. Moreover, this technology enables the storage of cells at -20 ºC, in a conventional freezer. Our strategy is to enter the market through the veterinary segment as the regulatory aspects are not so strict and we expect to start selling in two years after having the proof-of-concept validation with animal stem cells.