China's Animal Gene Editing Research Lab Cyagen Secures CNY 285 Million
The firm has been offering genetically-altered animals, research use viruses and stem cells for the country's growing number of biotech firms and research institutes.
Cyagen (赛业生物) carried out its Series B funding round worth CNY 285 million from a series of Chinese venture capitalists. The firm is yet another player in China's rapidly-expanding Contract Research Organization (CRO) and gene editing scene.
The animal research lab chain has R&D facilities in Japan, China, and the US with over 400 employees globally, the firm claims.
The firm has broadly been offering three core services: customized gene-altered rodent models, tailor-made DNA vectors and research-use viruses, as well as production and research of stem cells and related culture reagents. Its clients are life science research firms, clinical research institutions, drugmakers and biotechnology companies.
Chinese biotechnologies scene has been developing into a globally competitive industry mainly around genomics, advanced therapeutics, and immuno-oncology. The country's rocketing biotechnologies arena brought a lucrative CRO field with it.
Private equity firms, including Chinese Government-backed ones, have been betting big in China's third-party research firms. In 2019, Biocytogen (百奥赛图), a Beijing-based animal gene-editing focused CRO, secured over half a billion yuan from China Life Healthcare Fund and SDIC Venture Capital, marking one of the largest primary market investments of the year.
Another Cyagen contender, the Shanghai-based Model Organisms (模式生物), has been focusing on CRISPR.
The Mainland's largest CRO is Shanghai-based Wuxi Apptec (603259: SH) with around USD 27 billion market capitalization. The pharmaceutical research giant recorded revenue growth of 34.7% year-over-year to CNY 3,384 million in the third quarter of 2019.