Novosanis (Belgium) has been co-awarded a CASUS grant by Eurostars, a European Union (EU) program dedicated to supporting R&D-performing Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs). The project funded by this grant will be done in collaboration with Self-Screen (The Netherlands) and two academic partners - the University of Antwerp and Amsterdam UMC (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam).
The grant enables Novosanis to build a next-generation Colli-Pee® to offer a first-void urine self-sampling device for utilization in a molecular screening solution for cervical cancer. Colli-Pee® collects biomarker-rich first-void urine that can be tested for urologic cancers and sexually-transmitted infections. Several studies have demonstrated the possibility of first-void urine for detecting high-risk types of Human Papillomavirus (HPV), the primary cause of cervical cancer.
If detected at an early stage, cervical cancer is one of the most preventable cancer types. Despite the proven efficacy of traditional screening procedures, including cytology-based and HPV-testing in reducing incidence as well as mortality of the disease, both processes are underutilized. About 40% of women are at high risk but are not tested in the EU. Using first-void urine to detect HPV could offer a beneficial solution. It is easy and can be conducted in a home-based setting. Moreover, urine collection can overcome some of the current hurdles like anxiety or stress a woman may face, offering the possibility to increase testing rates.