BIOMAR MT- The picture of 2018
Biomar would like to share with you a vision of the changes and innovations that we have experienced in this 2018 and what they have meant for the future of the company.
In a year in which the biotechnology sector has continued to grow as in previous years, the valuation of its companies has reached 7,000 million euros, 0.7% of the Spanish GDP. Biomar has also experienced a year of growth, through the consolidation of its main lines of business and adding further action lines. In addition, the number of employees has risen by 17% during this period.
The main effort of the company has focused, once more, on Agriculture and the collaboration with Valent Biosciences in the development of new biopesticides is moving forward. The most advanced candidates are already in field tests, with expectations of commercialization in the near future.
According to our Strategic Plan, this year we have been focused on regulators of water stress and solutions for the plague caused by the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa, which has attacked olive and almond tree fields and vineyards. It has mainly affected temperate regions such as California and Italy, and is spreading out fast infecting southern Spain. In addition, we aim to identify new herbicides with a new project. After a year of screening and selection of active samples, the results are very promising.
In the Food sector, we have validated and launched a project of new natural ingredients from microorganisms in collaboration with one of the leading companies in Japan. We already have the initial results, and increased dedication to this area is expected in 2019.
The origin of Biomar is closely related to the search for active compounds in Human Health. During 2018 we have increased the resources devoted to this goal and invested in the development of preclinical studies for the compounds of our pipeline.
- CL0179: This compound was selected after in vitro assays of neuronal apoptosis, subsequently showing its neuroprotective activity in a Huntington model. This year, the compound was tested in a mouse induced stroke model, a disease with no current effective treatments. The results of the preclinical experiments showed a clear improvement in the motor abilities of the affected mice, and were consistent with the previous evidence: the absence of both toxicity and other side effects. Recently, a new Huntington model test has confirmed those previous good results. Next year we will focus on identifying the mechanism of action.
- AD0111: In the in vitro tests, this compound has shown more activity against glioblastoma stem cells than the standard treatment (temozolomide y carmustine). Given the absence of standard mouse models with stem cells, we have also defined a model to begin the in vivo tests during next year.
- On the other hand, an efficacy study has been developed in an animal model of multiple sclerosis, resulting in the selection of one compound that, in the preliminary results, inhibits the progression of the disease by 45% compared to the vehicle.
Biomar has also begun the expansion to the Animal Health sector during 2018. After the good results obtained in agriculture and other small projects in this sector, the team has great confidence in the potential of the collections for the development of new products.
We are currently in conversations with a leading company in the sector to develop a new screening project and begin a collaboration to test our extracts and find a solution for one of the main challenges in this industry.
Last but not least, Biomar has made the strategic decision to build a production plant with up to 3,000 L tanks. This way, we will be able to meet the growing demand of fermentation services required by the market, and move our internal projects to a following stage.
We have also continued to invest in attending to fairs, such as Farmafórum, Biospain and the Bio International Convention, held in Boston this year, an iconic city for science and technology. These experiences have been a great opportunity to keep us connected to the industry news and innovations, and a good way to establish contacts that could become into future collaborations.
There has also been a marked shift in our corporate image, with the launch of our current website and blog, that we hope you can find interesting, and is expected to have a growing activity in the future.
In short, 2018 has been a year of progress for Biomar, which has focused on a mixed model between contract R&D and its own products development. The expectations for 2019 are the expansion to the Animal Health sector and the building of a new production plant. They promise a year full of challenges, motivation and enthusiasm.
We would like to thank you for being so near and so supporting during this year, and wish you a Happy Holiday Season and a 2019 full of happiness and innovation.
Miguel Fernández Medarde
Business Development Manager
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