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Fujifilm’s Life Sciences Corporate Venture Capital Fund Invests in PhenoVista Biosciences

Investment will Accelerate Development of New High-content Screening Assays

SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--PhenoVista Biosciences (PhenoVista), a contract research organization (CRO) and leading provider of both custom and off-the-shelf, imaging-based assay services based in San Diego, California, today announced a strategic investment by FUJIFILM Corporation, Tokyo. FUJIFILM Corporation’s Life Sciences Corporate Venture Capital (LS-CVC) strategic investment fund is investing in PhenoVista to accelerate the development of new high-content screening (HCS) assay services using FUJIFILM iCell® differentiated induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and PhenoVista’s cutting-edge imaging technologies.

This investment builds upon the existing strategic alliance between FUJIFILM Corporation subsidiary, FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, Inc., a leading global developer and manufacturer of human iPSCs, and PhenoVista. FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics aims to further expand its drug-discovery business through this alliance initiated in November 2021 by collaboratively developing high-content, imaging-based assays using human iPSC-derived differentiated cells, which are highly relevant biological systems. These HCS assay services using iPSCs are capable of monitoring complex intracellular functions, such as cell health, mitochondrial health, and synapse formation, in individual human cells that are involved in disease progression, supporting pharmaceutical companies in their drug-discovery processes.

“Fujifilm’s investment will accelerate an exciting phase of growth for PhenoVista, further solidifying our position as the leader in imaging-based analysis of complex cell models,” said James G. Evans, CEO and co-founder of PhenoVista Biosciences. “Through this deepening relationship, PhenoVista’s current and future partners and collaborators will have early access to new cell models from Fujifilm, our long-trusted source of validated iPS cell models in the most relevant therapeutic areas, and we will continue to develop new models in both our bespoke and Ready-2-Go service platforms.”

“Fujifilm is committed to solving societal issues through the creation of new values from the alignment with partners that offer technological capabilities for a strategic fit with our life sciences portfolio,” said Takatoshi Ishikawa, general manager of Life Sciences Strategy Headquarters, FUJIFILM Corporation. “The investment through the LS-CVC fund consolidates the partnership with PhenoVista to accelerate pioneering the field of iPSC-derived services, which helps ensure that more patients get new treatments they need faster.”

“Fujifilm brings a wealth of expertise in imaging to the life sciences arena, and in collaboration with PhenoVista, will continue to help our shared customers with their efficient drug-discovery processes through the combination of highly relevant, human cell types and powerful HCS capabilities and experience,” said Tomoyuki Hasegawa, president and CEO, FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, Inc. “This investment will continue to support the growth and expansion of our iCell business in addition to our advanced offering of cell applications by growing customer access to HCS assays using our iPSCs.”

Launched in February 2022, LS-CVC is a newly established group within Fujifilm’s Life Sciences Strategy Headquarters in Tokyo. Fujifilm is initially investing 7B¥ (about 50 million USD) to start the fund, targeting cutting-edge biotechnology primarily through partnerships with early-stage companies around the world.

About PhenoVista Biosciences

PhenoVista Biosciences is a leading provider of disease-relevant cell-based assay services based in San Diego, California. PhenoVista’s team of PhD-level scientists with diverse expertise, ranging from biomedical engineering to neurobiology, work with clients in a collaborative, adaptable manner to design and implement physiologically meaningful assays that are predictive of drug safety and efficacy. PhenoVista has built a strong reputation on providing high-quality data to biopharmaceutical clients with its unique and unparalleled combination of cutting-edge cell models and the latest quantitative-imaging technologies and data-analysis capabilities. Their diverse repertoire includes working with primary cells, iPSC-derived neurons and glia, and client-engineered lines in a variety of formats, such as 2D, 3D, co-culture, and microfluidic systems. PhenoVista’s team delivers unrivaled functional, structural, pre-clinical, and mechanistic data to clients globally.

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Steve Wiltgen
Phenovista Biosciences

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Last Updated: 14-Dec-2022