Since
2022
Luxembourg
Diagnostics
TRL 4

Challenge

Lung cancer is the second most common cancer worldwide, with more than 2.2 million new cases reported in 2020. It is the most common cancer in men and the second most common in women. The disease has a significant impact on global health, causing an estimated 1.8 million deaths in 2020. With a lack of reliable screening methods to detect lung cancer early in the general population, low-dose computed tomography (CT) screening is recommended only for older high-risk groups like heavy smokers. However, CT screening has not been widely adopted due to costs, radiation exposure risks, and false positive results that can lead to unnecessary procedures. A non-invasive biomarker test is critically needed to cost-effectively screen at-risk individuals before symptoms appear.

Opportunity

Current screening options grapple with substantial limitations, as low-dose CT scans exhibit high false positive rates of up to 25%, coupled with radiation risks. Chest X-rays lack the required accuracy for comprehensive screening, and existing blood tests prove either insufficiently sensitive for lung cancer, applicable only to certain cancer subtypes, or are excessively costly. This scenario leaves doctors without effective tools for early lung cancer diagnosis, jeopardizing the optimal window for treatment. Patients are left with no recourse but to wait for symptoms, often leading to late-stage diagnoses.

Solution

Moving towards the goal of identifying solid cancers through blood analysis, our breakthrough method offers immediate treatment solutions during routine screening. Poised to complement or replace LDCT for high- and average-risk individuals, our non-invasive, highly sensitive approach reduces false positives and costs. The multi-protein panel enables non-invasive detection, including stage I cancer, enhancing its promise as a screening tool. Early detection significantly improves 5-year survival rates for patients, avoiding painful procedures and radiation risks. For doctors, the test provides swift and accurate diagnoses during routine exams. From a healthcare perspective, widespread screening diminishes late-stage diagnoses, lowering treatment costs. The 6-protein biomarker panel, machine learning, and validated efficacy sets our test apart, reinforced by strategic partnerships with global market access.

Status

Aerion Bioscience is revolutionizing lung cancer detection with a breakthrough 6-protein biomarker panel. Successful testing in multiple clinical groups has led the venture to broaden its focus, testing a range of lung cancer samples and other conditions. Aerion Bioscience is optimizing its technology for a globally accessible, low-cost test. Collaboration with specialists is integral to enhancing detection methods and developing next-gen test kits. Through strategic partnerships, they aim to redefine early lung cancer screening, saving millions of lives by combining advanced molecular technologies with cutting-edge AI, including neural-symbolic AI.

Meet the team

Dr. Axel Schumacher

Dr. Axel Schumacher

CEO of Aerion Bioscience

DSC_4162_pp-2

Kathrin Ballesteros

Venture Partner

Kathrin joined NLC in October 2021. She has more than 20 years of experience supporting Startups – mainly in the Life Science business – in different positions as a consultant and coach. Kathrin is a biochemist and holds a PhD in Molecular Neurobiochemistry. Besides her scientific background, she is also trained as a Business Coach, Team Coach & Team Developer and has a Micro master’s in Business Model Innovation. Kathrin brings expertise in supporting early-stage scientific and entrepreneurial projects turning into valuable businesses.