Precision Therapeutics ropes in $60M for corporate overhaul

Precision Therapeutics is launching a corporate overhaul with $60 million in tow, changing its name to "Helomics" and rolling out new initiatives to beef up its personalized diagnostics offerings for cancer.

The Pittsburgh, PA-based company will use new financing from HealthCare Royalty Partners to further its testing platforms, including a personalized reporting system for tumor profiling and predictive analytics that help physicians determine the best treatment options for patients, Helomics said in a statement. The company will also channel funds into existing products such as GeneFx, a microarray-based gene signature that can predict a patient's risk for redeveloping colon cancer within 5 years, and ChemoFx, a diagnostic tool that helps doctors select therapies for women with gynecologic cancer.

The company touts ChemoFx's promising performance in studies, as recent data showed a 14-month improvement in median overall survival when ovarian cancer patients are treated with therapies identified by the testing system. In the past four years, Precision has received more than 50,000 gynecologic cancer patient specimens for ChemoFx testing from more than 1,000 U.S. hospitals, the company said in a statement.

Neil Campbell

But Helomics is not going to settle for the status quo; it plans to unveil a new set of diagnostic tools, including genomics and proteomics analytics, bioinformatics and personalized analytics, and an expanded precision cellular analytics platform. And Helomics has its eye on future deals, saying in a statement that it "will actively look to acquire new products to enhance its personalized healthcare platform."

Helomics also named a new C-suite as part of the shakeup, appointing Neil Campbell as president and CEO; Dane Saglio as vice president and CFO; and a new board led by chairman Todd Davis. Campbell, a veteran of Abbott Laboratories ($ABT), brings 30 years of life sciences know-how to the table, and Saglio also boasts an extensive biopharma resume.

"The marketplace for individualized medicine is rapidly growing," Campbell said in a statement. "With an even greater strategic vision and new management team, we believe Helomics is uniquely positioned to be the next-generation in personalized healthcare for patients with cancer and their physicians."

- here's Helomics' statement
- get MedCityNews' take

Special Report: Top 20 VC deals of 2008 - Precision Therapeutics

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