Singapore-based Startup, Biosensorix, Wins 3rd Prize At TechCrunch Asia Shanghai
Eradicating Deaths From Delayed Diagnosis Of The World's Second Leading Cause Of Death – Stroke
Diagnostics today are a time-consuming process, mainly performed in centralised laboratories using laboratory-based tests that rely on expensive equipment and highly trained personnel. The Singapore-based startup, Biosensorix, aims to revolutionise this tedious process by developing lab grade diagnostic home test kits to enable on-demand, point-of-care diagnostics, screening or monitoring, that will be easy-to-use, rapid and low-cost and most importantly accessible to everyone. Spun out by from the NRF-CREATE project, initiated by ex-president Tony Tan, the company has been making extensive headway, garnering great interest from institutions and investors alike, having already raised $1.4 million in grant funding and even showcasing their radical technology at the recent 10 year anniversary of the CREATE project.
Presenting their development of a rapid diagnostic device for stroke detection at the TechCrunch Shanghai Startup Competition this year, Biosensorix emerged 3rd after five gruelling rounds of three-minute pitches and three-minute jury questioning against startups from over 22 countries, securing a RMB 300,000 (roughly SGD$60, 000) prize bond.
Focusing on regular stroke self-diagnosis kit for high-risk patients, their technology speeds up diagnoses using ELLI™, a USB-like device that can detect and quantify disease biomarkers within a mere 15 minutes. By alerting users in advance with regular self-testing at home, this self diagnosis kit prevents health conditions from escalating by allowing patients to seek timely medical advice.
Beyond just a simple positive or negative result, the diagnostic kit developed by Biosensorix will also determine how acute the case is. According to the designer of the devices and co-founder of Biosensorix Dr Luka Fajs; “Our stroke diagnostics kit stands out because of the underlying technology that enables users to get a specific number – a risk score – at a very low cost. Also the added accuracy is important because it gives reassurance to the user that the risk score is clinically relevant.”
This breakthrough technology couldn’t be more relevant with stroke being the fourth leading cause of death and the largest cause of long-term physical disability in Singapore, according to Dr Daniel Oh, a consultant from the National Neuroscience Institute. Combined with Singapore's rapidly ageing population, stroke severity is also expected to increase exponentially in the near future, posing a major challenge to the healthcare system of which this test kit could be a godsend solution.
“We are collaborating with research institutions and hospitals around the world and always on the lookout for more collaborations. Our engagement with local hospitals is for now limited to basic research but we will expand it to a larger scale clinical trials once the technology is matured. Our long-term goal is to provide the tests to both local and foreign collaborators and enhance their stroke care”, says Fajs.
If this ambitious vision is to be realised, Biosensorix would single-handedly redefine the future of diagnostics and point-of-care testing, saving millions of lives and healthcare dollars in the process.