Abionic Wins the ‘Prix Debiopharm Valais Pour les Sciences de la Vie’ for its Innovative Biomedical Device for Diagnostic Testing

November 23, 2010

LAUSANNE, Switzerland, November 23, 2010 /PRNewswire/ — Debiopharm
Group(TM) (Debiopharm), an independent specialist in global
bio-pharmaceutical development in the field of oncology and regarding certain
serious diseases, has announced the winner of the Prix Debiopharm Valais pour
les Sciences de la Vie (Debiopharm Valais Life Sciences Prize). This year,
Abionic S.A., represented by its founder and executive director Dr Nicolas
, won the prize for a new diagnostic platform, the abioDISC, which
measures patients’ allergy profiles rapidly, simply and economically. The
abioDISC is used in conjunction with an abioSCOPE reader, connected to the
doctor’s computer via a simple USB connection. Using it couldn’t be simpler:
a small drop of blood is taken from the patient’s fingertip using a lancing
device. The blood is diluted, placed into one of the recesses of the
abioDISC, and then analysed via the abioSCOPE. The computer displays the
patient’s allergy profile, enabling the doctor to interpret the results and
prescribe the most suitable medicine.

The jury’s attention was caught by Abionic S.A.’s innovative, simple,
efficient, reliable and economic technology.

On 23 November, an amount of 20,000 Swiss Francs was awarded to Abionic
S.A. during a ceremony which took place at The Ark Foundation in Monthey.

“Abionic fits in perfectly with Debiopharm’s philosophy,” declared
Bertrand Ducrey, CEO of Debio R.P. “The diagnostic platform developed by
Abionic is entirely consistent with the principles of responsible medicine
for tomorrow’s world, as advocated by Debiopharm – these principles give rise
to the need for technologies which are both innovative and financially

“Abionic S.A. is very proud to have been selected by the jury for the
2010 Prix Debiopharm Valais,” remarked Dr Nicolas Durand, who added that “the
Abionic team sees the prize not simply as a reward, but rather as an
incentive to continue working hard towards the development and running of
efficient and economic systems.”

Dr Jean-Claude Villettaz (R&D Director at HEVs and Vice-Chairman of The
Ark Foundation) considers that “the work carried out by Abionic, and justly
rewarded by the Debiopharm prize, reflects the calibre of entrepreneurs
operating in the French-speaking region of Switzerland in the life-sciences
field,” and added that he “looks forward to the time when Abionic’s
innovations enable better diagnosis of allergies and thus more effective

About the Prize

Awarded for the first time in 2008, the Prize rewards students,
researchers or enterprises (start-ups, SMEs) that undertake a research
project leading to an innovation usable in the field of life sciences and
technologies. Ideally, the innovation must be close to the stage where it
could be marketed and take the form of a product, a technological advance or
an innovative service.

The innovative advance, or its scientific and economic consequences, must
have a direct link with the Valais. The event is organised by The Ark
Foundation, in partnership with BioAlps, Swiss Biotech Association, and the
“Haute Ecole Specialisee de Suisse occidentale.”

About Debiopharm Group(TM) (Debiopharm)

Debiopharm specialises in biopharmaceutical product development. It
acquires licences for biological products and molecules having a worthwhile
medicinal potential. Debiopharm develops its products with a view to
worldwide registration and grants licences to pharmaceutical partners who are
in charge of the marketing and sales activities. It independently finances
all its activities in the world, and it provides expertise in the fields of
pre-clinical, clinical, manufacturing, galenic, formulation of medicines and
regulatory matters.

Founded in 1979 and based in Lausanne, Switzerland, Debiopharm has
developed five products which are currently marketed worldwide.

Debio Recherche Pharmaceutique (R.P.), based in Martigny, is a company
involved in pharmaceutical research, development and production, inspected by
SwissMedic and the US regulatory authorities (FDA). Each year, 300,000 people
across the globe are treated with products developed and produced in
Martigny, with a 95% rate of positive results from the treatment. Debio R.P.
belongs to Debiopharm Group(TM) and employs 130 people, nearly half of whom
are university academics and engineers.

For more information about Debiopharm Group(TM), please visit:

About The Ark Foundation

The Ark Foundation promotes innovation within the Valais economy,
concentrating on three areas: IT and communications sciences, life sciences
and engineering sciences.

The aim of The Ark is to build tomorrow’s technology in the Valais. To
achieve this aim, it offers tailored services helping to strengthen the
competitiveness of Valais companies and pooling the canton’s renowned skills.

This strategy is implemented at six technological sites: BioArk Monthey,
IdeArk Martigny, PhytoArk Sion, TechnoArk Sierre, BlueArk Viege and TeleArk

For more information, go to: http://www.theark.ch.

About BioArk

BioArk is a technological site dedicated to life sciences. It is located
at the heart of the chemical industrial zone in Monthey, and is a centre of
technological expertise offering high-quality infrastructure and an
environment conducive to the development of companies active in the
life-sciences field.

The site comprises an area of 2,500 m2 spread over three floors, and
units with offices and laboratory equipment enabling the creation of
life-size, pre-marketing models of biotechnological projects. BioArk helps
enterprises and start-up companies established on the site to tap into this
rich vein of knowledge and know-how among research institutes, educational
establishments and industrial operators. Currently, it hosts seven companies
working in the field of life sciences and technologies.

    For more information, please visit: http://www.bioark.ch.

    Debio R.P.
    Dr Bertrand Ducrey
    Tel. : +41(0)27-721-79-00
    Email : bducrey@debiopharm.ch

    Jury President
    Dr Jean-Claude Villettaz
    Director R&D HEVs
    Tel. : +41(0)79-262-44-12
    Email : jclaude.villettaz@hevs.ch

    Abionic SA
    Dr Nicolas Durand
    Founder and Executive Director
    Tel. : +41(0)79-753-57-66
    Email : nicolas.durand@abionic.com

    Debiopharm S.A.
    Dr Maurice Wagner
    Director, Corporate Affairs & Communication
    Tel.: +41(0)21-321-01-11
    Fax: +41(0)21-321-01-69
    Email: mwagner@debiopharm.com

SOURCE Debiopharm Group

Source: newswire

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