A Description of the Business of Medsaic Pty Ltd.

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Provide a brief description of the business, state why you consider it to be “Entrepreneurial”; explain how the business creates value through the identification and exploitation of new products, processes and/or markets. Medsaic Pty Ltd is an Australian biotechnology company that is a good example of a successful start up entrepreneurial business. Founded in 2003, as a spin-off company from the University of Sydney, it was established to commercialize patented intellectual property covering the use of microarrays for the diagnosis of disease[1].

Medsaic developed new platform technology, now known as DotScanTM, which is a solid-phase cell-capture assay using an antibody mircoarray to immunophenotype cancer cells[2], as well as propriety technology for rapid imaging[3]. The concept was developed by Professors Richard Christopherson and Cris dos Remedios in 1998. Both were frustrated that chemotherapy, with its serious side-effects, was the best treatment available for a friend who had been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia[4].

They had the idea that by identifying the wide-range of proteins expressed on the surface of a patient’s leukaemia cells, they could enable rapid diagnosis of the type of leukaemia and a strategy for more specific treatment – instead of the current method of trial and error chemotherapy[5]. Beginning as a research project at the University of Sydney they were able to receive early funding from an Angel investor. Once the initial discovery was made, a patent was lodged in December 1998. This enabled the company to have a definable intellectual property platform[6].

The university then went on to create a company to provide a vehicle for the intellectual property. This allowed for the development of a business plan, and through this funding was able to be sourced from venture capitalists and private equity sources[7]. Through a BIF grant, they were able to show proof of principal, in that they were able to get the imaging technology and product into pathology labs. From here they were able to further develop the product and introduce it to the market[8]. The first DotScanTM product to enter the market was for the diagnosis of leukaemia and lymphoma applications in mid-2005.

The market for the product is valued at more than $60 million in Australia and $1. 2 billion in the United States of America[9]. The current benchmark protocol for leukaemia and lymphoma diagnosis is Flow Cytometry, which allows for the identification of ~4-5 markers on the cell surface. In contrast, DotScanTM technology is able to identify anywhere up to 200 markers. While the original application of DotScanTM is as a rapid diagnostic tool, it may also be used as a prognostic tool in the future, allowing for the development of treatments designed for the individual[10].

The main users of DotScanTM are pathology service providers, and Medsaic were able to develop a commercial partnership with Mayne Pathology, which had the second-largest share of the pathology market at the time. This allowed Medsaic Pty Ltd to develop their product in a commercial pathology environment and work alongside the incumbent technology, enabling them to receive customer feedback throughout the development process[11], as well as allowing a quick rollout of the product. Medsaic also developed a direct-sale approach, and have looked to expand their product into overseas markets[12].

On top of this, Medsaic continue to develop their product for new applications and have published research using DotScanTM technology for the diagnosis of solid tumour cancers[13] and autoimmune diseases[14]. These areas, in conjunction with leukaemia & lymphoma, account for more than 50 million diagnostic cases per year worldwide[15]. Medsaic Pty Ltd is a good example of an Australian entrepreneurial business. They have been able to successfully develop laboratory research into a marketable product, generating value through the identification and development of a new product.

They also are continuing the innovative process by researching and developing new applications for their DotScanTM platform technology, which will hopefully lead to the introduction of further products into the marketplace.

Bibliography 1. Medsaic Pty Ltd 2006, Medsaic Pty Ltd, Sydney, Australia, viewed 25th of March 2009, http://www. medsaic. com 2. Major Achievements in Cancer Research, Cancer Research Network – The University of Sydney, viewed 26th of March 2009, http://www. cancerresearch. med. usyd. edu. au/research/achieve. php 3.

In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast, 11 April, accessed 26 March 2009, http://cdn4. libsyn. com/successfulinnovation/SIP_In_Dialogue_Jeremy_Chrisp_Medsaic. mp3? nvb=200903 30005636&nva=20090331010636&t=0fb248e2383fd332872e0 4.

Medsaic Pty Ltd – Company – Profile, Medsaic Pty Ltd, Sydney, Australia, viewed 25th of March 2009, http://www. medsaic. com/company. html 5. 6. Beran, R. 2005, Mayne first to offer Medsaic’s DotScan as leukaemia test, 23 August, Australian Life Scientist, viewed 27th March 2009, http://www. biotechnews. com. au/article/138023/mayne_first_offer_medsaic_dotscan_ leukaemia_test.

7. Heath, E. 2008, New diagnostic test for cancer promises less trauma for patients, 17 March, The University of Sydney News, viewed 26th March 2009 http://www. usyd. edu. au/news/science/397. html? newsstoryid=2294 8. Medsaic Pty. Ltd. 2005, Commerical reality for Australian-developed leukaemia diagnostic test, 8 October, Labonline, viewed 27th March 2009 http://www. labonline. com. au/articles/811-Commercial-reality-for-Australian-developed-leukaemia-diagnostic-test 9. Krelle, R.

2005 Medsaic sets out to profile Leukaemia, 29 March, Australian Life Scientist, viewed 26th March 2009, http://www. biotechnews. com. au/article/129215/medsaic_sets_profile_leukaemia.

Medsaic Pty Ltd 2006, Medsaic Pty Ltd, Sydney, Australia, viewed 25th of March 2009, [2] Major Achievements in Cancer Research, Cancer Research Network – The University of Sydney, viewed 26th of March 2009, < http://www. cancerresearch. med. usyd. edu. au/research/achieve. php> [3] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast.

Successful Innovation Podcast, 11 April, accessed 26 March 2009, < http://cdn4. libsyn. com/successfulinnovation/SIP_In_Dialogue_Jeremy_Chrisp_Medsaic. mp3?nvb=200903 30005636&nva=20090331010636&t=0fb248e2383fd332872e0> [4] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [5] In Dialogue Series.

– Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [6] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [7] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [8] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [9].

Medsaic Pty Ltd – Company – Profile, Medsaic Pty Ltd, Sydney, Australia, viewed 25th of March 2009, http://www.medsaic. com/company. html [10] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [11] Beran, R. 2005, Mayne first to offer Medsaic’s DotScan as leukaemia test, 23 August, Australian Life Scientist, viewed 27th March 2009, < http://www. biotechnews. com.au/article/138023/mayne_first_offer_medsaic_dotscan_ leukaemia_test> [12] In Dialogue Series – Jeremy Crisp 2006, podcast, Successful Innovation Podcast [13] Ellmark P, Belov L, Huang P, Lee CS, Solomon MJ, Morgan DK & Christopherson RI (2006).

“Multiplex detection of surface molecules on colorectal cancers” Proteomics 6(6):1791-802 [14] Wu JQ, Wang B, Belov L, Chrisp J, Learmont J, Dyer WB, Zaunders J, Cunningham AL, Dwyer DE & Saksena NK (2007) “Antibody microarray analysis of cell surface antigens on CD4+ and CD8+ T cells from HIV+ individuals correlates with disease stages.

” Retrovirology 4:83 [15] Medsaic Pty Ltd – Company – Profile, Medsaic Pty Ltd, Sydney, Australia.

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