7 medtech stories we missed this week: Sept. 29, 2017

medtech missed

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From EOI getting FDA clearance to Sanuwave’s new joint venture agreement, here are seven medtech stories we missed this week but thought were still worth mentioning.

1. EOI wins FDA nod for FLXfit15 expandable cage

EOI announced in a Sept. 28 press release that it has received FDA 510(k) clearance for its FLXfit 15. The clearance will help enhance the company’s FLXfir 3D expandable cage system and help expand the surgeon’s flexibility and capability by offering different length options.

2. ivWatch inks distribution deal with Terumo

ivWatch has recently signed a licensing and distribution agreement with Terumo to improve patient safety, according to a Sept. 21 press release. Terumo will become the exclusive distributor of the ivWatch Model 400 and ivWatch OEM board in Japan. ivWatch technology can be integrated with other patient monitoring systems, infusion pumps and other devices easily with the ivWatch OEM board. The agreement also allows Terumo to exclusively integrate ivWatch into existing and future Terumo products in Japan.

3. FDA clears Mortise Medical’s LigaMetrics suture anchor system

Mortise Medical announced in a Sept. 26 press release that it has received FDA 510(k) clearance for its LigaMetrics Suture Anchor System. The LigaMetrics Suture Anchor System is the first and only knotless suture anchor that allows for precise, measured tension control of the suture repair construct. The system is designed to connect to and lock suture tape that is attached to soft tissue or a conventional suture anchor.

4. Lombard Medical launches Aorfix delivery device in Japan

Lombard Medical has commercially launched its new delivery system for the Aorfix AAA system, according to a Sept. 26 press release. The new delivery system is marketed in Japan by Medico’s Hirata and is used to deliver Lombard’s Aorfix AAA stent graph.

5. FDA expands clearance for Cefaly migraine device

Cefaly announced in a Sept. 21 press release that the FDA has expanded its clearance for Cefaly Acute migraine treatment. The device is used for the acute treatment of migraines in patients 18 years or older. The Cefaly Acute allows migraine sufferers to use the device during a migraine attack which makes it more than a preventative measure.

6. Varian touts first use of Halcyon oncology system

Varian Medical System has announced that the first patient in the world has been treated using Varian’s Halcyon system, according to a Sept. 21 press release. The patient had head and neck cancer. The system is suited to offer advanced treatments for prostate, breast, head and neck and other forms of cancer.

7. Sanuwave inks JV deal with Brazil’s Mundimed

Sanuwave announced in a Sept. 28 press release that it has signed a joint venture agreement with Mundimed in Brazil. The agreement states that the companies will split profits in the wound care industry while using the dermaPACE technology. The net present value is expected to exceed $25M. Sanuwave will also receive an undisclosed amount of cash payments beginning Sept. 30 and the payments will continue through 2019.

Here’s what we missed last week.

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UPDATE: Abbott plans to close $5B Alere buyout next week

Abbott to acquire AlereUPDATED Sept. 29, 2017, with U.S. Justice Dept. news.

Abbott (NYSE:ABT) said today that it plans to close its once star-crossed merger with Alere (NYSE:ALR) next week, after U.S. and Canadian anti-trust regulators yesterday approved the deal subject to concessions.

Abbott agreed to divest a blood gas testing system to Siemens (NYSE:SI), which also agreed to buy two Alere facilities in Ottawa. Quidel (NSDQ:QDEL) Corp. is slated to buy Abbott’s heart function testing system business and an Alere facility in San Diego.

Abbott offered to acquire Alere in February 2016. After several snafus, the company finally agreed to purchase Alere for $5.3 billion – down from its initial $5.8 billion price tag. The deal is now slated to close Oct. 3, Abbott said.

“Creating the world’s leading point of care business will help Abbott meet the growing demand for fast, accurate and actionable information,” diagnostic products EVP Brian Blaser said in prepared remarks. “Combined with Abbott’s existing point-of-care business and its leading hand-held platform, i-Stat, we now have the broadest point of care testing portfolio to help improve care for patients in more parts of the world.”

Abbott said the Alere buyout should take its diagnostics revenues to about $7 billion annually.

Alere yesterday agreed to pay more than $13 million to settle SEC charges that it committed accounting fraud; today the Waltham, Mass.-based company said the U.S. Justice Dept. closed its probe into Alere’s dealings with third-party distributors and foreign healthcare officials without taking any action against Alere.

“We are pleased that this matter has been closed with no action taken against Alere,” the company said.

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CEO Cook says healthcare is “big area for Apple’s future”

Despite lacking new health-related innovations on its most recent iPhone 8 and iPhone X release announcement, Apple (NSDQ:AAPL) is still focused on the healthcare industry, CEO Tim Cook told Fortune magazine.

The tech giant has recently made strides towards making its iPhone devices healthcare-connected central depositories, announcing in June it would team with Health Gorilla to add health and diagnostic lab data and with DexCom to integrate G5 CGM support into its Apple Watch, alongside rumors that the company was looking to acquire Aetnahealth.

“We’re extremely interested in this area. And, yes, it is a business opportunity. If you look at it, medical health activity is the largest or second-largest component of the economy, depending on which country in the world you’re dealing with,” Cook told Fortune.

But Cook said that in exploring innovation in healthcare, Apple had found that most companies were less focused on patients than they were on reimbursements.

“And it hasn’t been constructed in a way where the focus at the device level is making great products from a pure point of view. The focus has been on making products that can get reimbursed through the insurance companies, through Medicare, or through Medicaid. And so in some ways we bring a totally fresh view into this and say, ‘Forget all of that. What will help people?’” Cook said.

The Apple Watch has been a major focal point for the company’s healthcare efforts, as the device includes a a number of health diagnostics, and Cook said he expects the watch to continue growing as a diagnostic.

“One of the things that we’ve learned that we’ve been really surprised and delighted about is this device, because of the monitoring of the heart, has essentially alerted people through the collection of the data that they have a problem. And that spurred them to go to the doctor and say, ‘Look at my heart rate data. Is something wrong?’ And a not-insignificant number have found out if they hadn’t come into the doctor they would have died,” Cook told Fortune in an interview.

Cook said that the company would continue to invest in its app-based ResearchKit program, touting a number of 1st-of-their-kind studies since the implementation, but gave the caveat that the project was not designed to be a money maker for the company.

“There’s no business model there. Honestly, we don’t make any money on that. But it was something that we thought would be good for society and so we did it. Will it eventually lead us somewhere? We’ll find out. I can’t answer that today,” Cook said.

Cook also teased that the company was developing products for the healthcare field, but said many of the projects he couldn’t talk about.

“There’s much more in the health area. There’s a lot of stuff that I can’t tell you about that we’re working on, some of which it’s clear there’s a commercial business there. And some of it it’s clear there’s not. And some of it it‘s not clear. I do think it’s a big area for Apple’s future,” Cook told Fortune.

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Novel nanotech enables earlier diagnosis, treatment of Zika virus

Researchers from Washington University have developed a novel diagnostic test that uses nanotech to rapidly detect the presence of Zika virus in blood samples.

The team’s system, which was described in the journal Advanced Biosystems, could enable earlier diagnosis and treatment for people infected with Zika virus compared to traditional diagnostic methods.

Get the full story at our sister site, Drug Delivery Business News.

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FDA allows 23andMe to reintroduce 10 genetic health risk reports for Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and more

Some 3 1/2 years after having its hand slapped, 23andMe has received a green light from the FDA to market 10 direct-to-consumer genetic health risk reports for conditions such as Parkinson’s, late-onset Alzheimer’s, and celiac disease.

The DNA of depression: Australia launches 20,000-person genomics study

Why do some people respond to antidepressant medications, while others gain no symptom relief at all?

That’s just one of many million-dollar questions that confound drug developers and healthcare providers working in the field of mental health. The unknowns complicate clinical trials, treatment decisions, and of course, greatly impact patients.

In an effort to shine some light into the gray skies of depression, Australia has launched a 20,000-person genomics study, funded by the government’s National Health and Medical Research Council.

The resulting data and findings will feed into an international study of 200,000 individuals with depression, the largest-ever undertaking in the field.

It’s just what the doctor ordered.

According to a recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is now the leading cause of disability worldwide. As of 2015, some 322 million individuals were afflicted — roughly the population of the United States. Global prevalence has soared close to 20 percent in the last decade alone.

In a 2014 Nature article, Steve Hyman, director of the Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research at the Broad Institute, called for a large-scale genomics study of over 100,000 patients to bring the field up to speed.

“Progress in other disorders, such as autism and schizophrenia, suggest that the best hope for insights is to identify specific genetic variants associated with the disease,” Hyman wrote. “However, success in depression will require studies of much larger collections of human DNA samples than in other diseases if statistically significant signals are to come through.”

As part of the Australian study, volunteers 18-years and older will be asked to complete a 15-minute online survey. Based on their responses, they may then be asked to submit a saliva sample for genomic analysis. The sample will be sequenced and screened for hundreds of DNA variants through a process known as ‘genome-wide association scans’ (GWAS). The investigators are particularly interested in patients who have taken medications for the disease.

Genomic studies could unlock information about why some individuals – and families – have a greater likelihood of developing depression. The data could inform new drug development and ensure the right patients are recruited into the right trials.

It could also help explain the variable response individuals have to antidepressant medications — a burgeoning field known as pharmacogenomics. Such tests help guide what therapies and doses may work best.

Mayo Clinic startup OneOme has a panel that includes information on what psychotropic drugs, including antidepressants, could be well-tolerated based on the individual’s genetic makeup. Several genes relate to antidepressant efficacy, including HTR2A/GRIK4 and SLC6A4.

“There is a clear need in the psychiatric space for objective biomarkers that allow healthcare providers to tailor treatment – and that’s where pharmacogenomics comes in,” said OneOme CEO Paul Owens in an email forwarded by a company representative. “Since genetic factors account for up to 95 percent of drug-response variability, pharmacogenomics can help physicians identify which psychiatric drugs may work best for individual patients, before they even take them.”

While pharmacogenomics holds wide potential, a lot more information is needed to effectively treat mental illnesses the first time around. Owen also noted that the medical community has been slow to capitalize on the knowledge that does exist.

“Unfortunately, the education and understanding of genomics – let alone pharmacogenomics in routine medical practice – is still in its infancy stage,” he said.

There is a long way to go, but a 200,000-person genomics study is a good place to start. As Hyman wrote in nature, a basic understanding of the biology is still lacking.

“Failures to improve efficacy reflect continued ignorance of the molecular mechanisms of depression,” he said, then noted later on; “The investments will be well worth it.”

Photo: phototechno, Getty Images

All things new: Gritstone Oncology unveils its cancer vaccine roadmap at AACR

Gritstone Oncology splashed onto the scene in late-2015, with a $102 million Series A that hinted at some lofty goals for cancer immunotherapy.

Some 18-months later, the team is presenting the first of its data in a poster session at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) annual meeting, which kicked off in Washington, D.C., on Saturday.

It’s the company’s first big reveal. So what have they got?

Enough to shoot for an IND filing and human trials in the middle of next year, said Cofounder, President, and CEO Andrew Allen.

The poster outlines three concepts, each with supporting data. Combined, Allen said they close the loop on what the company is trying to achieve: A model for predicting tumor-specific neoantigens that can be used to trigger a robust T-cell immunotherapy response. The initial target is lung cancer.

What does that all mean?

Like Neon Therapeutics and The Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy, Gritstone is targeting neoantigens. These are mutations that arise “de novo” in a given cancer — they’re not otherwise found in the human genome.

As an immunotherapy target, they offer two major benefits: They’re foreign to the immune system and they’re not found in healthy tissue.

By comparison, traditional lung cancer targets such as ALK or EGFR have been present in the body since early development. They may be overexpressed in cancer cells, but the immune system has over time learned to tolerate them as “self.” That’s not a good platform for triggering a T-cell attack. Conversely, if the immune system was activated against those receptors, some healthy tissue would be hit.

Neoantigens are next-level personalized medicine, with next-level logistical challenges.

Predicting cancer neoantigens

Given the recurrent failures in cancer vaccine development, Gritstone is taking a two-pronged approach that verifies that specific neoantigens are truly being expressed on cancer cells.

“For success here, you’ve got to do two things well,” Allen said. “You’ve got to predict neoantigens well because that’s a big part of the problem. And then you’ve got to deliver them in a way that is going to drive large numbers of highly active T-cells.”

The first half of the puzzle is being pieced together by a team of around twenty, working in a facility in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The resulting data also make up the first findings in Gritstone’s AACR poster. The company asked whether the predictive modeling can be out-sourced.

Lung cancer has a high mutational burden, Allen explained — there are on average around 300 genomic changes. Of those, only around 1 percent will be truly novel neoantigens. It’s a drop in the ocean that is easily missed when a generalized approach to tumor profiling is deployed. Third-party labs that look for standard receptor targets typically omit between 20-25 percent of the mutations, Allen said. In some patients, 50-60 percent of the mutations are lost. Scientists need better data to build a cancer vaccine that works.

Zooming in on lung cancer, the Cambridge crew have extensively characterized hundreds of real tumor samples using DNA and RNA sequencing, mass spectrometry and deep learning.

Deep learning fast-tracks the process and removes the limitations of current thinking, Allen explained. It’s pure mathematics: it doesn’t apply the researcher’s biases and hypothesis and it’s not limited by our imagination.

“You’re saying, let me look for associations in a completely unconstrained way,” he said.

Those associations are then iteratively tested, to be rejected or strengthened. It eventually leads to a model that can predict from the sequence alone, which of those mutations will create peptides or antigens that will be presented on the tumor cell surface.

Andrew Allen, cofounder, president and CEO of Gritstone Oncology

Andrew Allen, cofounder, president and CEO of Gritstone Oncology

“Our estimate, when we test ourselves on fresh data, is that we’re operating at something like ten-fold better than the public domain approach that many of our competitors are using,” Allen said.

Therein lies the second segment of findings in the AACR poster, which asked if Gritstone’s in-house approach is effective. It seems it is. In the future, its scientists can sequence fresh tumor biopsies to accurately predict what mutated peptides could be targeted.

Rallying the immune response

The second challenge with cancer vaccines is learning how to weaponize the neoantigens to ensure the immune response doesn’t fall flat.

“Our model doesn’t necessarily predict antigens, it predicts whether a peptide will be presented by an HLA class 1 molecule on the cell surface,” Allen noted. “To be an antigen, you also have to stimulate a T-cell response.”

A West Coast team of around 30 is working on this problem in Gritstone’s headquarters in Emeryville, California.

Lessons on how to make a successful cancer vaccine, Allen said, could not be found in the cancer vaccine field. Not a lot has worked. Instead, Gritstone looked to the field of infectious diseases. Certain viruses, such as Malaria, are able to bury themselves deep within cells, he said. That necessitates a robust CD8 T-cell response — the kind Gritstone is hoping to produce.

“What was striking to us was that so many people were using viruses as a vector for delivering the antigens, in order to get these really effective T-cell responses. And so that’s the path that we’ve pursued,” he explained. 

It led to the third component of the poster. The company took the isolated peptides and some HLA-matched T-cells and asked; can they prime a T-cell response to a given neoantigen in vitro. Can they show that it does register an immune response?

They could.

“So that’s really closing the loop and obviously suggesting that, were this to be a patient that we were predicting and making a vaccine,” Allen said. “We have identified an antigen that should in principle be able to make good T-cells in response to the vaccine that may have the potential to kill the tumor.”

The company can connect a DNA mutation to an altered protein and show that it is processed and presented as an altered peptide. Gritstone may be the first to connect those dots in lung cancer, he said.

An eventual vaccine would be given in combination with an immune modulator, such as a PD-1 inhibitor , setting the immune system up for an optimal anti-tumor response.

It’s all theory for now, but Gritstone’s integrated use of deep learning and bioinformatics is broadening the basic theories the human mind can generate.

Photo: Esben_H, Getty Images

CARB-X dishes out $48M in grants to antimicrobial startups

CARB-X is making it rain.

The international antimicrobial consortium today announced grants totaling $48 million, spread across 11 companies in the U.S. and U.K.

Launched in mid-2016, CARB-X stands for Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator. It comes in response to the growing threat of drug-resistant infections — and the concerning lack of late-stage antibacterial drugs. As of March 2016, just 37 antibiotics were in clinical development for the U.S. market.

According to Thursday’s media release, CARB-X will spend up to $450 million from 2017-2021 to support innovative diagnostics and drugs in this field. More specifically, the accelerator aims to boost many preclinical programs that have the potential to move into human trials. By then, they’ll have a good shot at securing traditional forms of investment.

According to the CDC, some 20 million Americans are hit with a drug-resistant strain each year and 23,000 of those patients die. And the worst may be yet to come.

Federal initiatives, including the 2012 Generating Antibiotics Incentives Now Act (GAIN Act), are also underway. The GAIN Act creates a path for important antimicrobials to receive priority review, fast track designation, and a five-year extension of patent exclusivity.

Guy Macdonald, CEO of grant-winner Tetraphase, said the incentives for startups in this space are vital.

“For a small biotech company like ours, funding from these types of organizations is very important and helpful in continuing to advance our pipeline of novel antibiotics towards our ultimate goal of helping physicians and patients who are in urgent need of new treatment options,” Macdonald said in an email forwarded by a company representative.

The eleven recipients encompass three investigational new classes of antibiotics, four outside-the-box product ideas, and seven new molecular targets. That includes:

Cidara Therapeutics
San Diego, California

Awarded $3.9 million over 13 months, and potentially up to $3 million in the following 11 months for its Cloudbreak immunotherapy platform and lead candidate CD201, designed to treat serious multi-drug resistant bacterial infections.

ContraFect Corporation
Yonkers, New York

Awarded $1.1 million over 15 months, and potentially up to $1 million in the following nine months to progress antimicrobial lysins, which could combat drug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections.

Entasis Therapeutics
Waltham, Massachusetts

Awarded $2.1 million over nine months, and potentially up to $4.2 million in the following 12 months to develop an oral antibiotic for Gram-negative bacterial infections, including carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE).

Forge Therapeutics
San Diego, California

Awarded $4.8 million over 15 months, and potentially up to $4 million in the following 18 months for its pioneering chemistry platform, which could deliver the first novel class of ‘superbug’ antibiotics in decades.

Microbiotix Inc  
Worcester, Massachusetts

Awarded $1.6 million over 12 months, and potentially up to $1.6 million in the following 12 months for its Type III secretion inhibitors that aim to boost the body’s ability to fight bacteria and potentiate host defenses against P. aeruginosa-resistant pneumonia patients.

Oppilotech Ltd
London, United Kingdom

Awarded $120,000 over six months to perform computational modeling to develop potentiators, which weaken the bacterial membrane and break antibiotic resistance.

Proteus IRC
Edinburgh, Scotland

Awarded $640,000 over 21 months, and up to $480,000 more in the following 20 months for its new optical imaging technology that could increase the speed and accuracy of diagnoses in bacterial lung infections.

Redx Pharma
Alderley Park, United Kingdom

Awarded $1 million over 18 months to progress novel bacterial inhibitors that target multi-drug resistant bacteria and serious hospital-acquired infections.

Spero Therapeutics
Cambridge, Massachusetts

Awarded $1.6 million over 12 months, and potentially up to $5.4 million in the following 24 months for its combination drugs aimed at disrupting the Gram-negative bacterial membrane, allowing antibiotics to reach their targets.

Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals
Watertown, Massachusetts

Awarded $4 million over 18 months to further  TP-6076, an investigational synthetic fluorocycline antibiotic that targets the most urgent multi-drug resistant Gram-negative bacteria.

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Awarded $3 million over 12 months, and potentially up to $4.2 million in the following 12 months to develop an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) engineered to kill strains of the deadly Pseudomonas bacteria.

The CARB-X collaborators include:

The U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), Britain’s philanthropic Wellcome Trust, the R&D Centre for Antimicrobial Research (AMR Centre), Boston University, MassBio, the California Life Sciences Institute (CLSA), and the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID).

The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard will host CARB-X and RTI International will provide technical and regulatory support services, through computing systems that can identify, track and monitor the research programs.

Photo: jarun011, Getty Images

Health IT startup raises $11M+ to screen children for behavioral disorders, including autism

Cognoa, a health IT startup in the child development space that developed a way to screen children for sleep disorders, speech, and socialization issues, has raised $11.6 million, according to a company press release.

Cognoa CEO and Founder Brent Vaughan presented the company at the SXSW Pediatric Health pitch event last year. He said at the time that its first indication would be for autism and children on the autism spectrum. He noted that the current problem is that the time between parents spotting signs of a learning disability and getting an actual diagnosis is too long.

“Parents typically see signs at 18 months, but the average age for a diagnosis is 4 years old,” Vaughan said in his pitch. “For attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, it’s 7 years old.”

Morningside, a private equity and venture capital firm that’s an existing investor, provided the new funding, the release said. The new capital will be used to move along Cognoa’s machine-learning technology underpinning Cognoa’s screening platform. The funding will also be used to support further clinical validation and submissions to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It will also go towards expanding commercialization of the platform with employers, payers, and clinicians. Cognoa offers a version of its screening tool through self-insured employer plans referred to as its Cognoa for Employers program.

Cognoa has raised more than $20 million to date, the release noted.

Vaughan said its next phase of growth would focus on employers and health plans, the release said.

Diagnosing autism spectrum disorder has long been a controversial area. The increase in diagnosis has sparked concerns that it is overdiagnosed. But that hasn’t stopped several companies from taking different approaches to identifying the condition earlier to improve the outcomes for children with the condition. Boston-based Akili Labs developed an approach that uses gaming. Last week researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute published a study in PLOS ONE which showed that two biomarkers could accurately predict autistic spectrum disorders in children earlier than current practice.

Photo: Topp_Yimgrimm, Getty Images 

Omicia pivots to the clinic and rebrands as Fabric Genomics

Genomics is constantly advancing, evolving and reinventing itself. That drives companies operating in the field to rapidly adapt too.

What’s unusual about Oakland, California-based Omicia is that they have made the change official.

On Tuesday Omicia became Fabric Genomics.

Announced at the ACMG Annual Clinical Genetics Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, the new name represents a transition approximately three years in the making.

Omicia was founded in 2009 by Martin Reese, Edward Kiruluta, and John Stuelpnagel (the latter also cofounded Illumina back in 1998).

In a phone interview, CEO Matt Tindall said the first five years were spent building a high-quality tool to analyze genomes for rare diseases. The focus was on the research markets.

At a certain point, however, the team came to realize the reports were of a high enough quality to inform clinical decisions. And so from 2014 to 2016, Omicia transitioned away from the research crowd to become an actionable part of the healthcare landscape.

The company added somatic cancer analytics and reporting capabilities. In June 2016, it closed a $23 million Series B financing round, which provided the necessary resources to commit to a new direction. It then completed its product offering with the acquisition of Spiral Genetics for an undisclosed sum in early 2017.

Omicia was beginning to realize its vision to fully integrate into the clinical world as an end-to-end bioinformatics provider. The final step was a company rebrand.

“It’s really about our insight and analytics being embedded deeply within healthcare systems and clinical labs, really the whole healthcare ecosystem, and delivering those insights in a workflow that people can access easily to make treatment decisions,” Tindall explained, in regards to the new name.

Fabric’s software aggregates insights and knowledge from throughout the world into a single interface that can be operated by a lab technician. That includes data from 90 different annotation sources, along with links to educational information about each variant.

Once the interpretation is done, the user generates an actionable report. It’s reviewed by a lab director, before being sent to the clinician to inform the patient’s treatment plan.

The end-to-end software platform is convenient, Tindall said, but it’s also important for accuracy.

“Sometimes we get VCF files that were corrupted, missing data, incomplete,” he explained. “So we said, in order to provide clinical quality interpretation and insights, we need to be able to provide the secondary analysis and we need to be able to provide the service from the sequencer all the way through to the report.”

Fabric specializes in cancer and pediatric genomics, chasing two high-growth verticals within bioinformatics.

On the one hand, the company is partnering with the likes of Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine (Rady Children’s) in San Diego, California, a world leader in pediatric genomics. According to Tindall, the appeal of the company’s software includes accuracy, actionability, and speed.

“We’re delivering a guaranteed one hour turnaround time on the annotations for their pediatric clinical genomes,” he said.

At the other end of the spectrum, Fabric’s platform is scaling to help interpret genome-wide association studies that enroll tens of thousands of patients. In July 2015, Fabric was chosen as the primary genomic interpretation and clinical reporting provider in the U.K.’s 100,000 Genomes Project (Genomics England).

As the cost of sequencing goes down and the potential for greater reimbursement and insurance coverage rises, Tindall believes more and more individual and population-scale whole exome sequencing will be performed. Fabric wants to be the backbone of that work.

What is certain, is that the field of genomics will continue to change.

Will the relevancy of “Fabric Genomics” soon fade?

So long as it remains integrated within healthcare, the name should ring true.

Photo: Natali_Mis, Getty Images