SpeeDx Pty. Ltd., a developer of innovative molecular diagnostic solutions, has partnered with researchers from Nepean and Blue Mountains Local Health District (NBMLHD) to create a rapid test for risk-based management of COVID-19, influenza, and other severe respiratory disease.
Host biomarkers are important indicators of a patient's response to an infection and NBMLHD genomic researchers in the Department of Intensive Care Medicine at Nepean Hospital have identified a key biomarker, IFI27, that can be measured in the blood, with levels directly correlated to disease severity or the need for critical care.
The commercial test will provide quantifiable information to support critical decisions faced in pandemic situations and enhance patient management by:
(1) improving patient triage
(2) enabling fast screening of low-risk patients
(3) supporting clinical decisions (e.g. discharge for low-risk patient to home isolation)
(4) reducing overcrowding at hospitals
(5) ensuring rapid referral of high-risk patients to ICU
(6) helping allocate precious health resources.
In addition, the fact that this test can accurately differentiate viral from bacterial causes of respiratory syndromes, using a single-gene host biomarker, will be revolutionary in respiratory patient care. Coupled with a pathogen detection assay and other disease indicators, this test can not only stratify patients based on risk of adverse disease progression, but changes in the level of biomarker over time can inform more accurate prognoses and guide ongoing patient management decisions.
BTB Round: Three
State: New South Wales
Project Partners: Nepean and Blue Mountains Local Health District (NBMLHD)
- MTPConnect Grant: $531,411
- Industry Contribution: $771,411
Duration: November 2020 – March 2022 (Ongoing)
Contact: Elisa Mokany