Biocant Park


General Information

Company Name
Biocant Park
Year founded
14th of September of 2005
Number of Locations
Key People
Prof. Doutor Carlos José Fialho da Costa Faro - Presidente e Director Científico do Biocant
Prof. Doutor João Carlos Vidaurre Pais de Moura - Vice-Presidente
Prof. Doutor José Luis Oliveira (UA) – Unidade de Bioinformática, Director
Prof. Doutor Carlos Duarte (UC) – Unidade de Biologia Celular, Director
Prof. Doutor Euclides Pires (UC) – Unidade de Biotecnologia Molecular, Director
Prof. Doutor Manuel Santos (UA) – Unidade de Genómica, Director
Prof. Doutor Milton Costa (UC) – Unidade de Microbiologia, Director
Doutora Conceição Egas (CNC) – Unidade de Serviços Avançados, Directora
Doutor Lino Ferreira (CNC) – Grupo de Engenharia de Tecidos, Investigador Principal
Doutor André Valente (CNC) – Grupo de Sistemas Biológicos, Investigador Principal

Founded as the first biotechnology park in Portugal, Biocant Park seeks to sponsor, develop and apply advanced knowledge in the field of life sciences, supporting the solid entrepreneurial ventures of young Portuguese minds.
Besides allowinexternal image im_linkccj_2.gifg access to good starting facilities and conditions for emerging companies, borne of initiatives with economic and scientific potential, Biocant Park also features its own research and development laboratories, Biocant, which allows them to provide independent or contracted R&D on commercially viable solutions, to act as a consulting service on advanced biotechnology topics and to test and validate new ideas and business concepts.
There is also a strong commitment on science education with the Centre for Junior Science being inaugurated in June 2007, seeking to provide students and teachers with stimulating situations in field of experimental life sciences.

The park

Situated on the centre region of Portugal, more specifically on Cantanhede's Technological Park, between the major cities of Aveiro and Coimbra, Biocant Park consists, as of the present date, of three main buildings, the third being inaugurated on the 10th of February 2010. This new infrastructure, called Biocant PME's, has the maximum capacity for 20 companies, currently housing 10 companies with their own labs, since the building was designed with mixed and modular spaces for the companies to customize to their specific needs.
The two other buildings consist of the headquarters building, housing companies services, meeting rooms, an auditory, a restaurant and bar and the facilities of the Junior Centre of Science, and the Biocant building, where the research laboratories are located, coordinated by senior researchers from the universities of Aveiro and Coimbra.
A fourth building is already planned, the Centre for Neurosciences and Cellular Biology of the university of Coimbra, or CNC/UC.
There are also predicted the construction of at least two more units, a pilot unit of industrial biotechnology and one dedicated to virtual reality.[1]

Biocant R&D Labs

View of the Biocant building
View of the Biocant building

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The Bioinformatics Unit of Biocant came into being to answer to an increasing demand for work on the interface between computer sciences and the biomedical field of expertise. This area of science focuses on acquiring, storing, analysing and interpreting the huge amounts of data produced by all the research made on Biology. The continued growth of this field with all the genome sequencing requires the construction and improvement of the mathematical and informatics tools to fully comprehend the complex nature of the biological systems.

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Cell Biology
Cell Biology research group focuses its attention on the study mammalian cells, with research being made on cell differentiation, genetic manipulation of cells, studies on cell survival factors, cell toxicity studies for new drugs, identification of the mechanisms of action of drugs, intracellular calcium measurements, protein characterization of cellular, tissue and biological fluid samples, biomarker identification and development of diagnosis and prognosis tests.

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Molecular Biotechnology
The Molecular Biotechnology Unit centres its research on the biomedical or food and agriculture industry, seeking to find new proteins with commercial interest. All the work of isolating, characterization and production of said proteins is done in the lab, with the technology of recombinant DNA as a major tool.

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The Genomics Unit is dedicated to R&D in the areas of DNA sequencing, nucleic acid analysis and gene expression and develops new products for the Food, Pharmaceutical and Biotechnological Industries. It also provides support to start-ups in Molecular Biotechnology.

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The Microbiology Unit has an accredited laboratory and develops research in microbial diversity, while also providing services of microbiological quality control.
One major feature of this lab is its accreditation by both a Portuguese and International institution, according to NP EN ISO/IEC 17025.

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Sequencing Advanced Services
Advanced Services Unit is dedicated to high throughput DNA sequencing with next generation sequencing, also developing R&D projects based on mass spectrometry and DNA sequencing. As a valuable tool of work the Unit has a second generation DNA sequencer, the Genome Sequencer FLX Titanium, from 454 Life Sciences–Roche, a high throughput multiple parallel sequencing platform, generating massive amounts of DNA sequence per run.

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Tissue Engineering
Tissue Engineering Unit is dedicated to the development of stem cell and biomaterial-based therapies for regenerative medicine. In research is the development of nanomaterials to serve as scaffolds, helping to control cell differentiation. Other major concern is the development of new materials to help combat infections, a very common problem on the implantation of biomedical devices on the human body.

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Systems Biology
The Systems Biology Unit is dedicated to developing a mathematical, integrative view of Biology. Their goal is to view a biological system not as its individual parts but as the connection of all these parts.

Other companies present at the park

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Biocant Ventures
Biocant Ventures is a business angel, providing funds for young entrepreneurs projects in their initial phases. This company is focused on biotechnology start-ups, a novelty on the Portuguese market.

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Crioestaminal – Saúde e Tecnologia, SA
Crioestaminal is a company dedicated to the criopreservation of stem cells from the umbilical cord blood. These cells can later be used on several clinical procedures, both on the donor and also on members of his family. It settled in Biocant Park in 2003.

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geneBOX operates on the life sciences business, creating, developing and manufacturing diagnose tests for molecular biology labs. It was founded on 2003.

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GeneLab is a company whose product are molecular diagnostic tests in the fields of genetics, oncology and infectious diseases.

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Gene PreDiT, Lda.
Started in 2006, Gene PreDiT develops new strategies to identify novel biomarkers and applications of pharmaceutical compounds using in vivo and in silico comparison of different organisms.

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Hematos - Saúde e Tecnologia, Lda
Founded in 2004, the Hematos company was established to distribute medical devices to diagnosis in vitro in the gynecology, cardiology and gastroenterology areas.

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4Health, Lda.
4Health, Lda is a consulting company in the life sciences area focusing on Pharmacometrics.

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Interactome is noted as the first spin-off company from Biocant. Their field of expertise is the identification of new protein complexes by the use of a mathematical algoritm.

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The company MATERA was formed in January 2009 with the aim of commercializing internationally materials and permanent coatings with antimicrobial properties.

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Established in 2000, Biotrend goals are to conduct bioprocess engineering development on the industrial biotechnology area. Current interests are exploring nature's microbiodiversity.

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VIDAURRE LABORATORIES focus is on the cosmetic field, featuring fully developed R&D laboratories and a capability to launch their own brands on the market.

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SICGEN - Research and Development in Biotechnology Ltd
SICGEN main activity is the development and production of polyclonal antibodies for various fields of applications such as laboratory use or applied research on biochemistry, immunology and molecular biology.

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Link Bioscience, S.A.
Link Bioscience most representative projects are on the oncology and ageing fields of expertise. This company uses external partners as well as their own R&D facilities to develop these products.

Empresas afiliadas

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Bioalvo, SA
BIOALVO is a company specialized on developing new projects from the research phase to the preclinical trials. After this last phase the IP of the product is either licensed or co-developed with a large pharmaceutical company.

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NMT – Tecnologia, Inovação e Consultoria, Lda.
NMT was borne on 2007 as a spin off from FCT-UNL and its main goal is to develop and sell medical devices under the NeoMediTec® brand. Medical clinics, hospitals, research laboratories and vascular and cancer screening are the target market of the company.
by João Medeiros, nº56841, MEBiol

  1. bioinformatics
  2. biopharmaceutical
  3. company
  4. genetic tests
  5. monoclonal antibodies
  6. nanobiotechnology
  7. penicillin; antibiotics
  8. pharmaceutical
  9. poland
  10. portugal
  11. product
  12. technology
  13. tool
  14. vaccine

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