3 Irish start-ups backed with Horizon 2020 funding

8 Sep 2015

Pictured outside NovaUCD are Dr Máirín Rafferty (COO), Desmond O’Leary (CEO) and Prof William Gallagher (CSO), OncoMark

Three Irish start-ups have been selected for the latest Horizon 2020 funding round, with as much as €2.7m to be received by one of the trio for its project.

OncoMark, Arralis and Luxcel are the lucky trio joining 56 SMEs across 16 countries, with a grand total of €93.7m in funding backed by the European Commission on this occasion.

Spanish SMEs have once again been particularly successful with 11 beneficiaries on track to receive €15 million, closely followed by firms from Italy, the UK, Germany and Denmark.

Horizon 2020: Irish success

However, the Irish trio brings the country’s total number of backed projects since Horizon 2020 began to an impressive 34.

OncoMark will receive €2.7 million over two years for its project, OncoMasTR. The company plans to double its workforce to 20 over the course of the funding as it works to develop panels of cancer biomarkers.

Ultimately, the company wants to aid treatment decisions and allow more tailored patient management, particularly helping to inform people whether or not chemotherapy is a route they should take.

A healthy approach

“Currently, the majority of early-stage breast cancer patients are treated with chemotherapy, despite many not benefiting from such treatment, thereby exposing individuals to severe side effects,” said Des O’Leary, CEO of OncoMark.

“OncoMark is currently advancing a novel prognostic assay for early stage breast cancer… This would provide unambiguous results and a high degree of accuracy.”

Arralis is in line for €1.1m for its radar technology project PSR94. It’s a visualisation project to help pilots get a picture of their surroundings, even amid dust storms or GPS failures.

Arralis, Horizon 2020

Eamonn Boland (COO), Mike Gleaves (CTO), Oscar Gomez (MMIC design engineer), Barry Lunn (CEO), Marie Bourke (Project LEAR) of Arralis

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic