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Roche, Forbion Invest in MDx Firm Curetis

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Curetis today announced its Series A financing round has increased by €9.6 million ($13.3 million) bringing the total amount raised in the round to €34.1 million.

Roche Venture Fund and Dutch venture capital firm Forbion Capital Partners led the round. CD-Venture and Curetis' management were also participants.

The German molecular diagnostics firm has developed a platform called Unyvero for the identification of pathogenic genes as well as genetic markers associated with antibiotic resistance. Curetis CEO Oliver Schacht said in a statement that the funding will be used to develop cartridges for the platform for additional indications, such as surgical site infection and tuberculosis.

The funding will allow the company to pursue "a more aggressive international business development and marketing strategy," Curetis said.

The Unyvero system combines automated sample preparation with isolation, amplification, and multiplexed detection of DNA. The first application of the system, for comprehensive pneumonia testing, has completed pre-clinical testing. Clinical trials are about to begin, and Curetis plans to offer the test under CE marking in 2012.

"We are now fully financed for the upcoming clinical trials in the EU and the US, our planned 2012 European market launch of the Unyvero platform and pneumonia application, and the FDA filing and clearance in 2012/2013," Schacht said.

Curetis was founded in 2007 and has raised a total of €36.6 million, it said.

The company also said today that Holger Reithinger, partner at Forbion has joined its board of directors. Roche will get an observer seat on the board.

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