Volition has recently set up new laboratories at the Créalys Science Park in Gembloux. The company, which develops kits which make it possible to detect cancer from blood samples, started in 2010 with two researchers based at the University of Namur. Over 7 years, Belgian Volition has grown from 2 researchers to 14 employees, and plans to double its workforce by the end of 2018.
The company works in the Life Sciences sector, and focuses on the development, manufacture and distribution of non-invasive blood tests for the diagnosis of cancer. The tests are based on Nucleosomics™ technology which is developed by Volition, which make it possible to identify a signature of the sites of specific epigenetic modification for each cancer.
Belgian Volition is currently developing, manufacturing and distributing new innovative and revolutionary diagnostic kits in the area of cancer detection.
“The quality of employees and training in Wallonia is a real strength“, explains Gaëtan Michel, CEO of Belgian Volition.
The company was established in 2010 by two researchers based at the University of Namur, in order to launch the initial research activities. In 2012, the company moved to the University’s technological centre to develop its platform there. It has recently invested in a building situated in the Créalys Science Park. Laboratories with leading-edge technology have been built, making it possible to provide a suitable working environment while capitalising on the size of the research teams. “The surface area of the laboratories has been quadrupled, with three refrigerators which can each contain up to 50,000 samples, and machines which can record 3,000 tests per day. Only two drops of blood are required for each test. Our test, which is already used in some hospitals, can also easily be incorporated at General Practitioners’ clinics” explains Marielle Herzog, R&D Director at Volition. Belgian Volition works with numerous hospitals in Wallonia “For colorectal cancer, we already work with Liege hospital, and Mont-Godinne hospital. For prostate cancer, we work with hospitals in Charleroi and Brussels“. One of their ambitions is to build on the research and development activities in Wallonia.
The company currently employes 14 people and plans to double its workforce in the coming 2 years. For Gaëtan Michel, CEO of Volition, the training courses in Wallonia are an asset. “I also studied and did my doctorate in Namur“, he relates with a smile. “But above all, Wallonia has highly trained employees which allows us to hire the specialists we need for research and development very easily“. Belgian Volition is part of the BioWin competitive cluster, which means that it can request that certain training courses are oriented in such a way to meet their staffing needs more accurately. The other major advantage of Wallonia is of course the support provided by the region in the area of R&D.