A company which has developed a faster and more accurate way to diagnose cervical cancer is moving its headquarters to Manchester Science Park as it prepares to bring its first product to market.
Zilico Limited will be based in the MedTech Centre on Manchester Science Park. The company, which is relocating from Sheffield, recently completed a multi-centre trial across three hospitals. Saint Mary’s Hospital, Manchester was a centre in the trial under the supervision of the renowned gynaecological oncologist, Professor Henry Kitchener. Zilico also succeeded in raising £1.8M investment earlier this year from the North West Fund for Biomedical and other investors.
Zilico, which was spun out of the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, has developed a new system which can diagnose cervical dysplasia in real time, and when combined with colposcopy can improve diagnosis in women with abnormal cervical smear tests. ZedScan consists of a portable hand-held device which uses electrical impedance spectroscopy technology to detect changes in tissue.
Sameer Kothari, CEO of Zilico, said: “This relocation represents another major step as we move closer to launching ZedScan in early 2013.”
“The combination of quality onsite services, the region’s reputation for the development of medical technologies and local access to world-class medical facilities all provided an ideal fit for Zilico and what we are trying to achieve.”
The MedTech Centre is a joint venture between Central Manchester University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester Science Park (MSP) and TRUSTECH, the NHS North West innovation service and is home to companies developing healthcare focused technologies. Zilico’s arrival brings the number of companies to 15, with around 170 companies at MSP overall.
Manchester Science Park chief executive Rowena Burns said: “We are delighted to welcome Zilico into the wider Manchester Science Park community. MSP sits at the centre of a network connected by collaborative partnerships between the universities, hospital trusts and innovation-led companies of all sizes. The fact that companies like Zilico are choosing to locate here is testament to the strength of our offer and our understanding of what companies in fast growth sectors need”.
MedTech Centre manager Paul Hanmer said: “Zilico’s revolutionary technology has the potential to make a huge difference to the lives of women worldwide. Thanks to the clinical expertise we have here in Manchester, the company is ideally placed to embark on the next stage of development, to take its system into clinics. It demonstrates the way in which the MedTech Centre is accelerating new treatments and diagnosis into the healthcare system and also attracting new businesses to benefit the local economy.”
Cervical cancer affects around 500,000 women worldwide each year and is responsible for 300,000 deaths. Currently women are routinely screened every three to five years. If the results are positive they must then be referred to a colposcopy clinic for detailed examination.