Twelve months after Professor Sir John Burn introduced QuantuMDx to a captivated audience at the Faculty of Medical Sciences Festive Lecture 2015, we’re reflecting on one of the North-East’s Life Sciences biggest success stories. With the potential to tackle some of the world’s deadliest diseases, and the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), QuantuMDx have had a very exciting year further developing their diagnostic device Q-POC.
Q-POC is a handheld molecular diagnostic device that will accurately diagnose a range of diseases within 10 - 20 minutes, at the patient’s side. This will enable healthcare workers globally, even in resource limited settings, to accurately identify a disease and the presence of antimicrobial resistance, ensuring the patient receives the right drug, first time - helping safeguard the effectiveness of existing medicines, including antibiotics. Further to this, by connecting these devices to the cloud, globally distributed Q-POCs will create The Internet of Life which will map the spread of pathogens globally, giving Health Ministries, NGOs and WHO the information they need to rapidly respond to emerging pandemics.
Recent developments have seen QuantuMDx develop the next wave of technology which will push the power of the molecular laboratory into ‘under the tree’ settings in countries where access to mainstream diagnostics is otherwise not available. The low cost, rapid and accurate test for tuberculosis (TB) aims to reach the 4.3 million people with TB who are ‘missed’ in the existing healthcare system each year. It is estimated that 75 million people, more than the current population of the UK, would die of undiagnosed TB over the next 35 years without point of care technologies such as Q-POC.
Recognising QuantuMDx’s drive for innovation, UK Prime Minister Theresa May recently invited CEO Elaine Warburton OBE to represent the best of British business on the Prime Minister’s first major overseas visit since taking office. The global impact of Newcastle-based QuantuMDx has also been recognised by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation who recognise the need for a new approach to diagnostics reflecting the global requirements set out from the World Health Organisation. Recent funding awarded from the prestigious Gates Foundation will enable QuantuMDx to further develop their TB diagnostic test. Once commercialised it will provide the elusive solution to early TB detection enabling precise treatment strategies and reduced disease transmission and death.
2016 has been a whirlwind year for QuantuMDx, and their success reflects the hard work and innovation of the QuantuMDx team. Moving forward we cannot wait to see what 2017 brings for the company as they work towards realising their vision of empowering communities to thrive through the provision of affordable and accurate diagnostic solutions.