Fledgling Danish medical device company Fluimedix is developing a genetic test, which electronics engineer and company founder Tomas Ussing says will become the world's cheapest and enable a GP to have a test result in 15 minutes, writes professional journal Ingeniøren (The Engineer). The invention does however need venture capital in order to be realised.
"You can't just put blood or saliva on the chips that exist today and then read off the result. But you will be able to do that with ours – it is easier to use than a pregnancy test and provides the result in 15 minutes," says Ussing.
The new device is expected to be completed in 12-18 months, but Fluimedix needs capital to progress development work.
"Our test is conducted fully-automatically on a chip. We have developed a method where the same laser diode controls all the steps – from pumping the liquid round the chip to the PCR* process and extraction of DNA from the cells. No one has ever done that before," comments Ussing.
Fluimedix's test device will reportedly cost approx. DKK 5,000 (USD 953) and the chips around DKK 200 (USD 38) each, which Ussing estimates will bring the price of a genetic test down to one tenth of the current price. The target group will be GPs, who can use the test to find out which type or dose of a drug a patient will benefit most from.
* PCR – polymerase chain reaction, a technique used in molecular biology – Ed.