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Clearbridge BioMedics Reveals ClearCell(R) FX, Next Generation Label-free Cancer Cell Enrichment System at ASCO 2013

CHICAGO, May 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Clearbridge BioMedics today revealed its next generation ClearCell® FX System, which is developed for in vitro diagnostic applications. This will be on showcase at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2013 Annual Meeting at booth number 23092, from 31 May to 4 June 2013.

The new ClearCell® FX System is based on inertial focusing microfluidics and is label-free. Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs) in a patient's blood sample are separated and isolated using this novel inertial focusing spiral microfluidics in the single-use CTChip® FR. The larger and denser CTCs are separated from the other blood cells within the spiral biochip due to biomechanical differences and are subsequently focused into an enriched CTC "stream". These cell "streams" are then channelled and collected in a tube and can be readily used for downstream molecular analysis, such as mutation testing for targeted therapies. These retreived cancer cells remain wholly intact and viable due to the label-free separation process used. The ClearCell® FX System will allow physicians and researchers to rapidly isolate CTCs for further diagnostic testing and even cell culture, paving the way for the use of CTCs in treatment monitoring and personalized medicine.

"The technology for the ClearCell® FX system was developed by Clearbridge BioMedics in collaboration with the National University of Singapore and the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) center. Our new system will subsequently be undergoing regulatory approval in the U.S. and Europe. Once approved, it will be one of the world's first label-free CTC enrichment systems for diagnostic use. Clearbridge BioMedics believes this system will be an ideal companion diagnostic system that complements various cancer therapies," said Mr Johnson Chen , Co-founder and Managing Director, Clearbridge BioMedics.

Clearbridge BioMedics has engaged leading product development firm Cambridge Consultants to build the ClearCell® FX system. Clearbridge BioMedics worked with Cambridge Consultants to design the ClearCell® FX System to be a robust platform, suitable for both research and diagnostic applications.

John Pritchard , Head of Diagnostics at Cambridge Consultants, said: "This has been a collaborative merging of our extensive experience in diagnostic device development and Clearbridge BioMedics' expertise in cancer research and diagnostics -- and it's led to breakthrough technology that will have a huge impact on a lot of people's lives. Our systems engineering approach, coupled with our skills in fluidics, software and compliance, has enabled us to work quickly and efficiently with Clearbridge BioMedics -- even though we are thousands of miles apart."

Set up in late 2009, Clearbridge BioMedics is a spin-off company from the National University of Singapore. The company's first generation ClearCell® System, which was launched for the cancer research market in 2011, is one of the first non-biomarker based systems commercially available to detect, isolate and retrieve CTCs from blood. In early 2013, Clearbridge BioMedics raised US$7.2 million as its Series B funding. This injection of funds is being used to develop this next generation ClearCell® System. Clearbridge BioMedics is ISO13485 certified for the development of cell-based in-vitro diagnostic devices.

About Clearbridge BioMedics

Clearbridge BioMedics (CBB) specializes in novel platforms with applications in oncology research and diagnostics. It is a National University of Singapore (NUS) spinoff company that is committed to developing medical devices, which will impact the world and revolutionize cancer diagnostics and patient care, by leveraging on ground-breaking technology from research partners.

The ClearCell® System comprises patent-pending CTChips®, which are microfluidic biochips able to effectively detect, isolate and also retrieve wholly-intact CTCs (Circulating Tumor Cells) from small quantities of patient blood samples. The isolated CTCs can then be stained for identification and enumeration, or retrieved for further molecular analysis. The ClearCell® System aims to be the next generation of non-invasive "liquid biopsy" approach for cancer screening, diagnosis, staging, personalised medication, and treatment monitoring. 

CBB won all top three awards at the 2012 WSJ Asian Innovation Award (presented by The Wall Street Journal in partnership with Credit Suisse), and is also the winner of the 2012 Asian Entrepreneurship Awards in Japan. In March 2013, CBB closed a Series B investment with Vertex Venture Holdings Ltd (the wholly-owned VC arm of Temasek Holdings), SPRING Seeds Capital, Clearbridge BSA Pte Ltd and Mr Lu Yoh Chie , and BioVeda Capital.

Headquartered in Singapore, Clearbridge BioMedics currently has customers spanning Asia, Europe and North America.

About Cambridge Consultants

Cambridge Consultants develops breakthrough products, creates and licenses intellectual property, and provides business consultancy in technology critical issues for clients worldwide. For more than 50 years, the company has been helping its clients turn business opportunities into commercial successes, whether they are launching first-to-market products, entering new markets or expanding existing markets through the introduction of new technologies. With a team of more than 380 staff, including engineers, scientists, mathematicians and designers, in offices in Cambridge (UK), Boston (USA) and Singapore, Cambridge Consultants offers solutions across a diverse range of industries including medical technology, industrial and consumer products, transport, energy, cleantech and wireless communications. For more information, visit

Cambridge Consultants is part of Altran, a global leader in innovation and high-tech engineering consulting which supports companies in the creation and development of their new products and services. With a staff of 20,000 employees in more than 20 countries, the Group generated revenues of EUR1,456m in 2012. For more information visit:

SOURCE Clearbridge BioMedics
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