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The biotech company Phenocell settled in Grasse

Phenocell is a research-based biotechnology company specialized in the creation, production, and commercialization of cellular models for research and drug discovery. Brigitte Onteniente, CEO of Phenocell, tells everything about the settlement of the company on the Côte d’Azur and the goals for the year to come.

Can you tell us about your business? 

Innovation is at the heart of Phenocell activity. We combine the Nobel Prize technology iPSC with a unique human cell production expertise. This combination allows us to offer active ingredients testing services of a relevance and a robustness unrivaled in the pharmaceutical and dermo-cosmetic industries. In the dermo-cosmetic sector, we offer skin cells (sebocytes, keratinocytes and melanocytes) of different phototypes, available in unlimited quantity and without variation from one batch to another.

Our next growth driver are second generation models, more advanced (in 3D) which associate different types of cells. This is a major advantage in comparison to primary cells that are routinely used as regulatory studies (efficiency / toxicity), especially, lack access to reconstructed skin from cells coming from the same genetic background and are often limited in quantity.

Why did you establish your company on the Côte d’Azur?

First of all, the local ecosystem is really rich in our key sectors : ophthalmology and dermo-cosmetics. Of course, this was a key point in our decision. Also, the opening of the new business incubator GrasseBIOTECH allows us to materialize this set-up in premises specially designed for our activity.

What particular support have you received from Team Côte d’Azur while setting up?

Since the beginning of our establishment project in the Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur, Team Cote d’Azur was by our side during our office space research process as well as assisting our network creation with local partner’s and, overall, eased our set-up in the local ecosystem. The availability of Team Côte d’Azur is precious because it completes the ecosystem’s toolkit with a more personalized touch.  

What are your projects and objectives for the coming year?

Our premises in the GrasseBIOTECH Business Incubator allow us to freely grow with the space and equipments at our disposal. Moreover, recruiting local talent present is a priority already underway.

Brigitte Onteniente, CEO and founder of Phenocell

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