Deeside, North Wales-headquartered Reacta Biotech has raised £2.9m in its latest funding round to scale up its current portfolio of food allergy clinical diagnostic kits.

The latest funding round was led by Praetura Ventures with follow-on equity from the Development Bank of Wales. Other investors include venture capitalist Jon Moulton’s family office, Perscitus an Reacta’s management team.

The funding will be used to advance the manufacturing of Reacta’s current portfolio of clinical diagnostic testing kits for allergies, including peanut, egg and milk oral food challenges (OFCs), and to extend it product portfolio.

“It’s been a landmark year for Reacta, and we continue to go from strength-to-strength as a business, developing new diagnostic products and expanding our capabilities,” said Paul Abrahams, chief executive officer of Reacta.

“The number of people experiencing food allergies is increasing, so it’s vital that technologies to accurately and safely test for allergies are developed. We’re committed to providing excellence in the development of a suite of OFC products, and revolutionising the way food allergies are diagnosed worldwide,” he added.

In a statement, Reacta noted that although the ‘principle’ of OFCs is not new, its products represent the first ‘pharmaceutical grade’, standardised, dose-controlled and masked OFCs available in the market.

Approximately 250 million people globally are affected by food allergies, with more than 8.5% of the population in the UK estimated to have a food allergy.

“As a patient investor, we have backed Reacta with equity finance since 2019. Our continued support has enabled the business to develop their diagnostic products and expand their capabilities from their base here in North Wales. Importantly, they have now secured the specialist backing of Praetura Ventures, enabling the team to scale-up for further growth,” said Mike Bakewell and Oliver Wheatley of the Development Bank of Wales.