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Atlante Ventures enters Tethis (Genextra Holding)

The nanotechnology firm Tethis S.p.A., a subsidiary of Genextra S.p.A, a biotechnology holding company founded by Francesco Micheli, has approved a 3 million euro share capital increase that will result in the acquisition of an interest by the new shareholder Atlante Ventures, the Intesa Sanpaolo Group’s venture-capital fund, which will participate in the company alongside other minority-interest shareholders. The share capital increase, to be executed in two tranches, the first of which has already been subscribed for, is intended to fund the final stages of development of the MicroFINDTM device prior to its market launch.

MicroFINDTM is an innovative device for the detection of genetic alterations in tumours with florescent in situ hybridisation (FISH). MicroFINDTM is currently undergoing clinical testing for the diagnosis and prognosis of leukaemia as well as bladder and cervix cancer, for which a more efficient and effective laboratory test will soon be available . The novelty of MicroFINDTM lies in the use of Tethis’ nanostructured materials, which for the first time allow the integration of a consolidated analysis protocol such as FISH into a miniaturised device . Tethis’ technology has also been designed for the automation of the diagnostic tests, thus permitting wide-scale distribution.

“We are highly satisfied with the completion of this new round of funding,” commented Lorenzo Tallarigo, chief executive officer of Genextra S.p.A. and chairman of Tethis S.p.A., “as it will allow us to continue developing a program that we believe can seriously contribute to cancer diagnosis. The investment by Atlante Ventures, one of Italy’s leading venture-capital funds, represents further evidence of the validity of the MicroFINDTM project, in which the company has strongly believed since its inception.”