PRESS RELEASE: Oxford, UK and South Korea, 3rd June 2019: KwangDong Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd and Oxford Cancer Biomarkers Ltd. agree a significant investment partnership

Oxford Cancer Biomarkers (OCB) has gained a significant investment from leading South Korean healthcare company KwangDong Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. (KDP). This investment marks an exciting new commercial phase for the Oxford university spin-out as the company translates innovative cancer biomarker technology to improve standards of care. The company’s founders Professor Nick La Thangue and Professor David Kerr have extensive contacts in Asia and this investment is of significant mutual interest to both organisations. Professor La Thangue said: “It’s a great endorsement of OCB’s expertise and commercial potential to secure Kwang Dong Pharma as our latest strategic investor. We welcome Kwang Dong Pharma and look forward to building a successful and productive partnership with them”.

OCB launched its ToxNav platform in the UK in late 2018 and it has already been adopted by several leading Trusts for all patients starting 5-FU/capecitabine chemotherapy. This best in class germline assay comprises a panel of 19 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) to determine individual risk associated with DPYD deficiency amongst people who need 5-FU/capecitabine chemotherapy for cancer treatment. Severe DPYD deficiency can result in death for 0.5-1% people and severe toxicity for a further 10-30%. Genomics England is currently reviewing the case for DPYD testing, following from the French ANSM agency’s decision to mandate testing.

In addition; OCB has launched its digital pathology platform ColoProg in China through its partner MyBioMed. This brought a new era of access to precision oncology diagnostics across China and is the first in a suite of digital pathology technologies which will be brought to market in UK, China and the rest of the world in the near future.

OCB’s CEO David Browning commented; “The investment from Kwang Dong Pharma is extremely timely as it will enable OCB to accelerate market availability of its leading platforms to address important gaps in cancer care whilst extending their scope through the validation of additional product performance claims”.

About Oxford Cancer Biomarkers Ltd. (OCB)

Oxford Cancer Biomarkers is a personalised medicine company with a goal to enable early detection of cancer risk and to dramatically improve the precision of cancer treatment. OCB achieves this by applying platforms that incorporate biomarker-based technology from its R&D teams and partners, to integrate information, bringing enhanced certainty to decision-making in cancer diagnosis, prognosis and treatment. The first product to be launched is ToxNav, a 19 SNP germline assay that predicts individuals’ propensity to develop life-threatening adverse reactions from 5FU/capecitabine chemotherapy. ColoProg; a digital pathology test for the recurrence of Stage II tumours is already available in China. The company is working with academic partners to develop a population-based genome test for the lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer. Oxford Cancer Biomarkers is closely affiliated with The University of Oxford, where its founders lead research groups focused on translational cancer science. The company was founded by Nick La Thangue, Ph.D., Chair of Cancer Biology at Oxford University and David Kerr, CBE, D.Sc., M.D. FMedSci, Professor of Cancer Medicine at Oxford University. Investors in OCB include Longwall Venture Partners LLP, Esperante BV, Ningbo My-BioMed Biotechnology Co.,Ltd., CancerRop Co. Ltd., and the University.

About KwangDong Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

KwangDong Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (“Kwang Dong”), based in Seoul, Korea, is a leading Korean company focused on the development, manufacturing, and marketing of pharmaceuticals and healthy food products. Kwang Dong reported approximately US$630 million in net sales in 2018 and has more than 500 sales representatives in Korea.

Contact details

Oxford Cancer Biomarkers Ltd                                          KwangDong Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
Tel: +44 1865 784743                                                              Tel: +82 2 6006 7750

Email:                                  Email:
David Browning, CEO / David Oxlade, Chairman                   James Se-Young Cheon, Head of Pharmaceutical R&D HQ


Was this article helpful?
Yes No