American company Fluence Therapeutics is opening a R&D centre in Tampere, Finland, for developing and commercializing photodynamic therapy for the treatment of skin diseases. Fluence is developing a psoriasis drug which is placed on the skin and then activated by light produced by a special device. The new treatment is expected to transform the psoriasis market worldwide.
Finnish companies Modulight and FinnMedi will collaborate with Fluence in developing the device that can deliver the right amount of light to the patient’s skin from a specific and stable distance from the skin. According to Fluence, 125 million people around the world suffer from psoriasis. Yet there is currently no therapy available to treat the vast majority of sufferers with difficult cases that can deliver efficacy without unwanted side effects and prohibitive costs.
Finland is ideal R&D centre location
Psoriasis is more common in Finland and the other Nordic countries than in the rest of the world, which makes Finland an ideal location for the R&D centre. Fluence was also attracted by Finland’s expertise in medical devices, physics and optics, clinical development work and pharmaceutical research.
Fluence became aware of the opportunities offered by Finland through cooperation with Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation, and the BioFinland Technology Bridge Program, a joint collaborative initiative between the Akron Global Business Accelerator and the Helsinki Business and Science Park (HBSP).