What Integumen does
The backbone of the company is a product called Labskin, a laboratory-grown skin that is used by cosmetics and pharmaceutical companies to see how their latest products will react with human skin.
It differs from rival innovations in not having to exist in a sterile environment.
And, as chief executive Gerry Brandon pointed out in a recent interview, this has many advantages: “With Labskin, we can grow bacteria on it, so we can create models for acne, eczema, psoriasis and so on. It has even been tested on Ebola,” he told Proactive.
In short, Labskin gives scientists a much better idea of how their cream or gel or make-up will react in the real world.
Not only does it make animal testing redundant, the added accuracy it gives researchers reduces R&D costs by helping to improve success rates.
It owns STOER, a premium skincare range for men and also has a 9.35% stake in Cellulac, which produces biodegradable plastic ingredients and natural oils.
With the help of artificial intelligence firm Rinocloud, which it bought in April, the Integumen is building Labskin-on-a-chip, which will record every treatment tested on the Labskin platform and store its effects in a database.
That will give every dermatology clinic with a computer the ability to take a swab of a patient’s own skin bacteria, place it on the Labskin platform, run it against the database, and advise what the best course of treatment might be.
Then there’s Labskin AI, a digital extension to the lab-grown skin.
In May, the firm announced the roll-out of a Labskin AI product designed to clone the skin of volunteers in clinical trials.
The company said the new test would cut the number of volunteers required for trials by 50%, reducing recruitment times and project management costs.
How it's doing
New deals or contracts are never far away with Integumen.
In November for example, the company unveiled a collaboration with Parity to give it access to the recruiter's National Health Service, central government and private institutional client base.
At the same time, it provided 2020 revenue guidance of £4mln not including anything that might arise from the deal with Parity.
Also that month, an automated E.Coli detection project in Ireland (RAWtest) meanwhile reported 99.3% accuracy in under 4 seconds.
What the boss says: chief executive Gerry Brandon
“There isn’t out there on the market any way that you actually can have a psoriasis testing platform unless you go into animal studies.
“You are saving multiple years of development time and getting the product to the market faster.”
- Full results from Rawtest reservoir trial
- Sales start to accrue from Parity collaboration
- Revenues of at least £4mln expected in 2020 not including any Parity contribution