The Freiburg-based startup SpinDiag GmbH recently closed a 1.6 Mio. EUR seed-round with three private investors. The team developed a revolutionary point-of-care screening system for testing patients for antibiotic-resistant bacteria at their admission to hospitals and almost instantly so. The seed-capital will make it feasible to bring SpinDiag’s system from its current laboratory environment to first tests in hospitals.
“Testing in hospitals will not only be an important milestone for the subsequent market approval of our first product in the following financing rounds, but will demonstrate our potential for bringing infectious disease testing in general to the point of care”, says Dr. Daniel Mark, co-founder and CEO of SpinDiag. The worldwide market for point-of-care testing of infectious diseases is estimated by Grand View Research to be 5.4 billion USD in 2017. SpinDiag will address this market with a revolutionary technology: a fast, broad and affordable system so easy to use that nurses can test patients on the spot.
The problem of patients getting infected by other patients in hospitals with bacteria is increasingly appalling. In hospitals worldwide, about one in 25 patients is infected and thousands of them die as a result each year. “Hospitals are lacking an efficient workflow for handling risk patients. Our system will reduce the time of today’s testing-methods from 2-3 days to 30 minutes, thus obtaining the crucial information: whether a patient puts other patients at risk or not” explains Dr. Mark Keller, co-founder and Chief Product Officer at SpinDiag. He adds: “It is not just about bringing the results to the doctor in a short time, but also to cover all relevant antibiotic resistance and this at an affordable price. We will be the first to bring such a fast, broad and affordable screening to the market and this in an extremely easy to use format for operation by nurses on the ward.” SpinDiag’s team spent years of research and development at their mother-institute Hahn-Schickard to generate the basic technology for their product: an internationally patented centrifugal microfluidic platform. “The platform-characteristic of our product enables a very powerful product pipeline for the point-of-care testing of infectious diseases such as respiratory tract infections, sepsis and tuberculosis”, Dr. Oliver Strohmeier, co-founder and CTO at SpinDiag points out.
The team of SpinDiag convinced many juries, among others BBraun at the code_n competition, the Techniker Krankenkasse together with the Handelsblatt at the heath-i competition and the Science4Life jury (as well as their investors). Firstly, with the maturity of their system: a functional model of the system was already successfully tested with patient-samples at SpinDiag facilities. Secondly, with their vision: The newly-developed SpinDiag one system will allow rapid screening of all risk patients for all clinically relevant antibiotic-resistant bacteria right at the time and place of their admission to the hospital. Based on these results, doctors will then be able to decide on the spot whether that patient needs to be treated in isolation to protect others, or not. This will not only increase patient safety but also significantly cut costs for the respective hospitals by preventing outbreaks and unnecessary isolation for days on guesswork that later turns out to be without merit.
About SpinDiag: The SpinDiag GmbH was spun-off in 2016 from the research institute Hahn-Schickard, one of the world’s leading research institutes for microsystems, by a team of six experienced colleagues. They have been working together at several R&D projects at Hahn-Schickard for more than seven years, as well as developing for global industry partners. A seasoned serial start-up entrepreneur and advisors with more than thirty years business experience in the diagnostic market supplement the team. SpinDiag is devoted to the development of a point-of-care system that’s fast, broad and affordable, as well as routine-compatible, for screening of patients for antibiotic-resistant bacteria during their admission to hospitals. The system is conceptualized as a flexible diagnostic platform with a diverse set of tests for infectious diseases already in the product pipeline. Bottom line: this revolutionary development may well save hundreds of thousands of lives.