Nanomedicine could be the next revolution in healthcare and Paris-based Nanobiotix is one of the leading biotech in the field. It started from a vision in 2003 and now counts 50 employees after having raised over €70M. I had the chance to chat with Laurent Levy, founding CEO of the company, and will give you an overview of this very interesting discussion focused on the potential impact of the treatments the company develops and its future plans.
Disclosure: The original interview was conducted in French. The content, including the quotes, has been written independently and has not been validated by Nanobiotix.
Before going through the interview, you may want to get a quick overlook of the company’s history and background, which you can here: Nanobiotix on its way to change the paradigm in cancer therapy. We published the article a few weeks ago, which also includes a great illustration video.
“Nanobiotix’ therapeutical strategy is based on physics rather than on chemistry/biology” started Levy with. “We’re changing the way cancers can be treated“.
In fact, Nanobiotix’ Nanoparticles are injected directly into the tumor and will increase the efficiency of radiotherapies. The goal is to kill the maximum of cells in order to reduce the tumors’ size. Once smaller, chirurgical operation will then be possible.
How do you access market with such a product?
“Our business model is completely different“, Levy told me. “The nanoparticules are considered as a medical device in Europe and as a drug in the US. But in any case, our product could be reimbursed regarding its medical benefits. And we plan to use the existing distribution network which works well”.
He continued with another advantage Nanobiotix has “In a hospital, radiotherapists play a key role and will work transversally on all cancers instead of being specialized. It lowers our number of stakeholders to talk to and could facilitate our market access.”
How advanced are your clinical trials?
“Right now, we focus on oncology, where the highest medical needs are. Our most advanced trial is in sarcoma where we expect to obtain the CE mark (european market validation) by 2016 and start sales. We have already seen great results so far: tumor sizes have shrunk by 70% to 80%! Our two other trials are in lung cancer and ENT.” Levy answered.
Levy then gave me further perspectives: “But our product could have many more applications. Once we will show significant results, we could move rapidly to new applications and generate even more value from our unique technological platform.”
And could you tell me more on Nanobiotix’ situation now and the future plans?
“Today, we have a solid financial position. We raised over €70M, €38M in 2014 alone, our market cap evolved from €70M at our IPO to approximately €280M today. We should have enough money to reach the European market and to progress in the US”.
Nanobiotix is moving rapidly in North America. After announcing the opening of its US-subsidiary in Boston last september 2014, it hired Patrick Tricoli, former senior director of external R&D at Sanofi, and it just announced that MIT-rockstar Bob Langer (world most cited engineer) will join the advisory board. Still, Levy remains humble “We could have taken someone else but Bob Langer was really interested in our vision”.
A great conclusion for this great discussion. Nanobiotix is definitely a European biotech to watch closely.