GENEL: Accelerating Research to Enhance Personalized Care

Pharma Tech Outlook: Pharma Tech Magazine

GENEL: Accelerating Research to Enhance Personalized Care

Gaelle Saint-Auret, CEO and  Swathi Bisana, Technical Sales & Marketing Manager, GENELGaelle Saint-Auret, CEO and Swathi Bisana, Technical Sales & Marketing Manager
Leveraging her expertise in Genetics, Dr. Gaëlle Saint-Auret co-founded GENEL with Céline Paillier, who held a rich management experience with biotech companies. Relying on a partnership with the CEA (Grenoble), this visionary duo, along with a scientific committee comprised of Tristan Rousselle, Philippe Archinard, Cédric Perres, and Xavier Gidrol united their skills to provide human health researchers with innovative solutions. “Our objective is to help our clients in Cosmetic and Pharma industries by identifying their right blockbuster candidates through tailor-made strategies for a successful launch, ensuring that the time-to-market is drastically reduced,” says Gaëlle, who serves GENEL as its CEO and CSO.

Since its creation in 2014, GENEL has carved its niche in the cosmetic industry by successfully completing more than 50 projects so far. Its multidisciplinary team with expertise in primary cell culture, Molecular Biology, RNAi technology, Microscopy, and Bioinformatics integrates to discover the roles and mechanism of actions of cosmetic active ingredients on skin cells. As a result, cosmetic companies prove the potency of their products in a nimble and efficient fashion.

“One of our most popular test methods is EXOgen, an innovative in-vitro test that can reveal the remote effects of active ingredients through exosomal communication. Exosomes are small vesicles secreted by cells and contain proteins, lipids, and RNAs. Acting as messengers, they are involved in cell-to-cell signaling. Once skin cells are treated with an active ingredient, our test focusses on identifying the key molecules in their exosomes, which can regulate the gene expression in the cells that receive them.
Thus, you can unravel an interesting story through this method. It is agile, affordable, reliable and quick and can be easily adapted to any cell type and dermo-cosmetic pathway, making it unique in the market,” explains Dr. Swathi Bisana, the Technical Sales and Marketing Manager at GENEL.

With several successful stories to its credit and a greater than 90% client recurrence in both local and international markets, GENEL is now set to penetrate the pharma sector with high value-added innovative strategies.

For several years now, drug candidates are tested on 2D isolated cells, which is a time-consuming and expensive approach. Moreover, it is physiologically irrelevant in the context of cancer. With its unique, patented technology, GENEL is instigating a breakthrough method to examine the effect of candidate drugs on 3D mini-tumors meticulously. This screening method called NewScreen introduces VideoCell, a lens-free microscope that can visualize the effect of drug molecules and their ability to reduce the tumor size and/or control metastasis. With a successful scientific proof-of-concept, NewScreen for prostate cancer is scheduled for launch by the end of 2019. It is cost-effective, fast and further reduces the requirement of animal testing. The method will be eventually extended for breast and pancreatic cancers.

Conventionally, oncologists rely on multiple drug molecules, but unfortunately, there is a shortage of efficient tools to determine the best treatment. Gearing up for the launch in 2022 is GENEL’s PersoScreen—a personalized testing method for identifying the best anti-cancer treatment for a given patient. This would involve reconstituting the tumor of the patient in vitro for directly testing the possible treatments on it. PersoScreen would perfectly respect the patient’s DTI (Diagnosis-to-Treatment Interval) by providing results in 3 weeks, which is the average time between diagnosis and start of therapy.

By overcoming the challenges associated with the conventional methods, Gaëlle believes that NewScreen and PersoScreen can revolutionize the treatment for cancer. With such dedicated and value-bound propositions, GENEL is working towards creating a healthier world.
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