A mission-oriented company involved in the fight against cancer, Oncosema has been named the winner of the i-Lab 2023 Innovation Competition. This distinction underlines the relevance of the technology developed by Oncosema to enable the follow-up of cancer patients through simple blood tests.

In order to provide their patients with the best treatment management, oncologists need cancer characterization and follow-up tools. Today, the majority of tests performed are expensive, invasive or irradiant for patients. For these reasons, they cannot be carried out at regular intervals.

To fix this problem, Oncosema develops tests based on the detection of Circulating Tumor Cells (CTC) in the blood of patients. CTC are cells that detach from the primary tumor and move into the bloodstream. This phenomenon, which occurs from the early stages of cancer, is at the origin of the development of future metastases. Thus, the level of CTC in the blood of patients is a very relevant biomarker of aggression and cancer progression. However, because blood is a very cell-rich medium, detection of CTC is complex.

Oncosema uses a patented technology based on the recognition of surface antigens, strictly specific to CTC. A first study of blood samples from patients with different cancers showed that the Oncosema technology allows to sort and count CTC with performance levels hitherto unmatched in terms of sensitivity and specificity.

Organized by the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation in partnership with Bpifrance and ADEME, the i-Lab competition represents significant support for deep tech start-ups, whose innovative projects meet the challenges of tomorrow. I-Lab rewards the best research and development projects with significant financial support (up to €600,000 per project, for a total budget of €26 million) and appropriate assistance. In 23 years of existence, i-Lab has become a true quality label unanimously recognized by deep tech investors.

Thanks to the grant from the I-Lab competition, Oncosema aims to continue the validation of its technology on larger cohorts of patients treated with different therapeutic approaches. This phase is a prerequisite for marketing via an international distribution network.


Biopôle Clermont-Limagne
+33 (0)6 11 20 16 82
Contact : Bruno VEDRINE | b.vedrine@oncosema.com