About Us

Countagen was born as a spin-out from Science for Life Laboratory and Stockholm University in Stockholm in December 2020. The company was founded by three scientists, Malte Kühnemund, Iván Hernández-Neuta, and Felix Neumann, together with their previous doctoral supervisor, Mats Nilsson.

While gene editing has opened many opportunities to transform research, drug development and personalized medicine, gene editing techniques are not perfect. The goal of the founders was to enable precise digital quantification of nucleic acids utilizing well-established standard laboratory instrumentation. The result is proprietary, patent-pending Countagen technology.

The individuals supporting Countagen have a great passion and deep knowledge of the science behind this innovative technology. Most importantly, the company is able to draw upon expertise and experience in product development, commercial introductions, company expansion as well as exit strategies from companies such as Q-linea and Cartana (acquired by 10X Genomics in 2020). During the early phase of these endeavors we have been supported by partners such as Stockholm University, KI Innovations, EIT Health, Vinnova and ALMI Invest.

Why gene editing analysis and why now?

 

The advent of targeted gene editing, such as the Nobel prize awarded technique CRISPR/Cas9, has opened many possibilities for the development of new drugs and personalized therapies. A critical step for successful use of gene editing techniques is the analysis of the outcome in terms of the editing efficiency (to what extent has any DNA changes been introduced?) and specificity (has the correct change been implemented?). Current technologies/workflows for analysis after gene editing are either complex, require large, expensive instrumentation for high precision, or are outsourced to time-consuming external services.

Countagen aims to overcome these challenges by offering ready-to-use reagent-based solutions that allow users to analyze gene editing efficiency and specificity in a fast and easy manner within the working day. Patent-pending Countagen technology enables development of ‘plug-and-play’ solutions, made-to-order for each user, that provide reliable, highly accurate results within hours. Using only standard laboratory equipment, these products can be readily adopted into a normal laboratory workflow.

Products based on Countagen technology can provide data that allows researchers to move swiftly and confidently from gene edit to functional analysis; saving time, resources and, ultimately, accelerating their genomic research.

Company Timeline

 

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2021

Countagen raises the first financing round to develop the first GeneAbacus product, a made-to-order reagent kit for same-day gene editing analysis.

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2021 - 2022

Experience from academic research used to begin prototype development. Three patent applications filed to secure intellectual property.

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2023

Pilot studies initiated to benchmark GeneAbacus performance against existing workflows in-house and through independent, external beta testing. Promising results from pilot studies point towards a commercial product launch of the first GeneAbacus kit in Q4, 2023. Development of GeneAbacus HT, a multiwell plate format for higher throughput begins.

Company Timeline

 

^

2021

Countagen raises the first financing round to develop the first GeneAbacus product, a made-to-order reagent kit for same-day gene editing analysis.

^

2021 - 2022

Experience from academic research used to begin prototype development. Three patent applications filed to secure intellectual property.

^

2023

Pilot studies initiated to benchmark GeneAbacus performance against existing workflows in-house and through independent, external beta testing. Promising results from pilot studies point towards a commercial product launch of the first GeneAbacus kit in Q4, 2023. Development of GeneAbacus HT, a multiwell plate format for higher throughput begins.

Meet the team

Operational Team

Felix Neumann

Co-Founder & CEO
PhD in Biochemistry

Leiore Ajuria

Product Manager
PhD in Genetics

Joost Bergman

Product Engineer
MSc in Biomedicine

Trixy Fang

Scientist
PhD in Biochemistry

Iván Hernández-Neuta

Co-Founder & CSO

PhD in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Kathleen Grabert

Research & Development Intern

PhD in Neuroscience

Evelyn Lim

Marketing and Business Development Intern

Biomedical Engineering Undergraduate

Board of Directors

Mårten Winge

Co-Founder & Chairman of the Board

Serial Entrepreneur and CEO at Strike Pharma

Stina Wallmark

Ordinary Board Member

Investment Manager at Almi Invest and Board professional

Jon-Sverre Schanche

Ordinary Board Member

Board professional and Life Science Research

Mats Nilsson

Co-Founder & Ordinary Board Member

Professor in Biochemistry at Stockholm University

Scientific Advisors

Mats Nilsson

Co-Founder & Scientific Advisor

Professor in Biochemistry at Stockholm University/SciLifeLab

Bernhard Schmierer

Scientific Advisor

Head at the CRISPR Functional Genomics unit at Karolinska Institute

Sören Turan

Scientific Advisor

Scientist at Bayer Pharmaceuticals