September, 7 2023 Hong Kong firm invests in Jena-based Oncgnostics GmbH

The Hong Kong-based com­pany Grande Bio-tech Co. Ltd. is mak­ing a 7‑digit Euros invest­ment in the Jena-based diag­nos­tic com­pany Oncg­nos­tics GmbH. Oncg­nos­tics has devel­oped the can­cer diag­nos­tic Gyn­tect for the reli­able detec­tion of cer­vi­cal can­cer. Since 2022, this test has also been dis­trib­uted and uti­lized in col­lab­o­ra­tion with a local part­ner in China. Fol­low­ing the suc­cess­ful launch of Oncg­nos­tics’ test in China, Grande Bio-tech Co. Ltd. has decided to make a finan­cial com­mit­ment. The goal now is to expand the dis­tri­b­u­tion of tests devel­oped by Oncg­nos­tics in the ASEAN countries.


After years of close col­lab­o­ra­tion with a Chi­nese part­ner, Oncg­nos­tics’ Gyn­tect test received approval for the Chi­nese mar­ket in 2022. Since then, the test has been used in China under the name GongAnLi. The Hong Kong-based hold­ing Grande Bio-tech Co. Ltd., has now made a multi-mil­lion-dol­lar invest­ment. Dr. Alfred Hansel, Man­ag­ing Direc­tor at Oncg­nos­tics and respon­si­ble for inter­na­tional busi­ness devel­op­ment, stated, “Not every med­ical prod­uct receives approval for China. We’ve suc­ceeded. Now the next step is expand­ing to whole Asia. Such suc­cess is only pos­si­ble with strong part­ners.” One of these part­ners is now Grande Bio-tech Co. Ltd., with Mr. Hu Mu as Man­ag­ing Direc­tor, who men­tioned, “Oncg­nos­tics is the right part­ner for us to take big steps in early can­cer detection.”


Mr. Michael Thiele, Senior Invest­ment Man­ager at bm‑t beteili­gungs­man­age­ment thürin­gen GmbH, said: “Oncg­nos­tics is a prime exam­ple of Thuringia-based com­pa­nies oper­at­ing at a global level. That’s why we are fur­ther expand­ing our com­mit­ment into Oncg­nos­tics also with respect to pipeline prod­uct devel­op­ment.” Dr. Bernd Goer­gen, part­ner at HTGF, High-Tech Grün­der­fonds, stated, “As an investor from the very begin­ning, we know the poten­tial of Oncg­nos­tics’ tech­nol­ogy. There­fore, we also par­tic­i­pated in this financ­ing round.”


Gyn­tect is a swab test that accu­rately deter­mines within a few hours whether there is a pre­can­cer­ous con­di­tion or a tumor on the cervix. “With this test we are able to make quick and reli­able assess­ments of a poten­tial can­cer con­di­tion. The usual months-long uncer­tainty until fol­low-up exam­i­na­tions is elim­i­nated,” said Dr. Mar­tina Schmitz, CEO and Sci­en­tific Direc­tor of Oncg­nos­tics. At the same time, if there is an ele­vated can­cer risk or can­cer diag­no­sis, treat­ment can be ini­ti­ated more promptly. The test detects changes in the genetic mate­r­ial of cells and does not require inva­sive tis­sue sampling.


Oncg­nos­tics GmbH, a biotech startup spin off from the Jena Uni­ver­sity Hos­pi­tal, devel­ops mol­e­c­u­lar biol­ogy tests for can­cer diag­nos­tics based on epi­ge­netic changes in the human genome. With Gyn­tect, the com­pany intro­duced an inno­va­tion in the field of cer­vi­cal can­cer screen­ing. Cur­rently, the startup is devel­op­ing fur­ther tests for head and neck can­cers. The team of researchers led by founders Dr. Alfred Hansel (CEO) and Dr. Mar­tina Schmitz (CSO) received the Thuringia Inno­va­tion Prize twice (2014, 2017) for their diag­nos­tic approach.