£1.1m funding for Bristol meditech firm pioneering needle-free blood sugar monitor

September 12, 2022

A Bristol firm is to commercialise its world-beating 100% needle-free blood sugar monitor in a move that could have huge applications for chronic diseases such as diabetes.

Transdermal Diagnostics, which was launched in March, has raised £1.1m in a pre-seed round investment to further develop and bring to market its pioneering non-invasive technology.

The funding will enable it to set up a state-of-the-art laboratory in the Science Creates incubator in St Philips and help accelerate the technical and commercial development of its proprietary technology, potentially making it a leader in the wearable devices revolution.

University of Bath spin-out TD’s pain-free wearable smart-patch, pictured, allows for non-invasive and real-time monitoring of health biomarkers and can be used to better manage diabetes, which affects 415m people worldwide, as well as other diseases.

The technology promises to enable people living with diabetes to significantly slow down – or even prevent – the progression of the disease by monitoring blood glucose levels around the clock in a completely painless manner.

The patch will sample glucose through the skin and will eliminate the need for the poorly tolerated finger-prick blood test. Readings will be transmitted wirelessly to a mobile phone.

Transdermal Diagnostics CEO and founder Dr Luca Lipani said: “We are excited to have on board investors with a deep understanding of the transformative potential of Transdermal Diagnostics’ technology platform.

“Those funds will get us closer to our mission to revolutionise the prevention, diagnosis and management of chronic conditions, starting with diabetes.”

Transdermal Diagnostics chief scientific officer Dr Adelina Ilie added: “The technology required a truly interdisciplinary approach and was only made possible by the latest advances across multiple fields, such as advanced nanomaterials, nano- and bio-technology and machine learning-driven data analysis.

“Scalable methods able to deliver a device like ours on a flexible platform were also essential.”

Its financial backers include Bristol Private Equity Club, Innovate UK, QUBIS, Pioneer Group, Immetric and Science Angel Syndicate.

QUBIS, an innovation fund focused on spin-out companies, led on the £800,000 equity investment, which also included the venture capital arm of Nottingham-based Pioneer Group, the UK’s largest developer and operator of lab space.

Immetric, a fund specialising in growing IP-based, high-potential life science ventures also took part, alongside angel networks Bristol Private Equity Club and Science Angel Syndicate.

Additional to the round was funding of almost £300,000 from Innovate UK award.

Pioneer Group executive director Dr Glenn Crocker MBE said the funder got to know TD when it took part in its Innovate UK-backed LAUNCH programme.

“We were impressed by both the team and the technology, which has the potential to be transformative,” he added.

“In the UK alone, 15m people suffer from long-term, chronic diseases meaning Transdermal Diagnostic’s technology has huge real-world applications and commercialisation potential.

“Looking ahead, Pioneer Group will work closely with the company to help scale and commercialise the technology on offer by plugging the company into an ecosystem has supported more than 200 entrepreneurs and backed 38 start-ups.”

As well as taking part in LAUNCH, Transdermal Diagnostics also participated in the Scale-Up programme organised by the University of Bath-backed SETsquared innovation incubator.

The business is also a member of a number of other programmes, including the Spin Up Science Ventures accelerator, the Health Technology Regulatory and Innovation Programme, the Innovation to Commercialisation of University Research programme and is supported by the Academic Health Science Networks.

Transdermal Diagnostics was also supported by Drs Jenni Rogers and Phil Brown from the University of Bath’s Research & Innovation Services.

Dr Rogers said: “We’re delighted to see Transdermal Diagnostics spin out from the university. The technology has great potential to benefit people with diabetes, in particular, and we look forward to seeing its commercial realisation.”

Pictured below: Transdermal Diagnostics CEO and founder Dr Luca Lipani, centre, chief scientific officer Dr Adelina Ilie, fourth from left, and director and founder Prof Richard Guy, far right, with investors


Comments are closed.


Reach tens of thousands of senior business people across Bristol for just £120 a month. Email info@bristol-business.net for more information.