VC Startups working on COVID 19 Crisis
Over two dozen startups at Venture Center have lined up to fight against COVID19. These startups are working across domains such as Diagnostics, Peripheral Medical Devices, PPEs & Assistive Devices, Sterilizers & Disinfectants, and Digital Technology & Informatics.
Seagull Biosolutions: The versatile Active Virosome Technology (AVT) platform developed by the company will be useful to produce an AV-vaccine for COVID-19 in a very short time. The AV-expressing S protein of COVID-19 will be used for developing immunodiagnostics ELISA kits. The technology platform has previously been used to produce vaccine agents for Dengue (all 4 serotypes), Chikungunya, Zika & Ebola viruses.
Mylab Discovery Solutions: Mylab has developed “PathoDetect” which is a CoVID-19 detection kit that offers an invitro diagnostic real time PCR assay for qualitative detection of 2019-novel Coronavirus RNA in respiratory specimens. It is the only made-in-India kit that offers 100% accurate results compared with other domestic and international competitors. It has been approved by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO).
Module Innovations: is developing a rapid (15 minutes) lateral flow test (nCoVSENSEs (TM)) based on gold nanoparticles for the detection of S1 and S2 spike proteins of COVID-19. From the preliminary studies that the team has carried out, it is evident that the spike proteins of COVID-19 elicit an immune response in the human body, which in turn makes IgM antibodies within 3 days and IgG antibodies within 8 days of infection. The platform technology that will be leveraged for the propsed test has already been tested for their other product USense (for UTI detection) successfully.
Fastsense Diagnostics: has expertise in using medical biosensors for a variety of applications. They are expanding their electrochemical on-chip portable-sensor technology to develop a rapid detection kit with minimal sample processing and on the spot detection. The company is currently working on two products – a modified PCR-based detection kit that can be used for confirmatory analysis of approximately 50 samples in an hour. The second product is a portable chip-based module for rapid screening of the target population that will offer on the spot results in less than 15 min per sample.
Weinnovate Biosolutions: has developed an alcohol-free colloidal-silver-based hand sanitizer and disinfectant that can be of great help in combating the spread of the corona virus. The water-based sanitizing solution is non-inflammable, making their production, transportation and storage a less-risky affair. Also, the colloidal nature of the solution ensures effectiveness for a longer duration as the nanoparticles are released in a slow and sustained manner. The company is leveraging its previous experience of working on technologies for infection prevention using colloidal silver.
Blackfrog Technologies: has developed a portable temperature-regulation device for last-mile transport of thermally sensitive biologicals like vaccines, blood, serums etc. The technology will be used for transport of biological samples (blood, sputum) from hospitals/remote areas to diagnostic centres that conduct COVID-19 testing. Future application is for the transport of vaccines (when completed) and strategically covering high-risk areas. They have already donated 1 unit of Emvólio- their portable medical-grade refrigeration system to the Udupi District Govt. Hospital for safe & efficient transport of COVID-19 specimens to laboratories.
Genrich Membranes: Genrich has developed a membrane oxygenator equipment using their proprietary hollow-fiber membrane technology for individual or under hospital settings. The unit enriches atmospheric air at certain pressure (4-5 bar) which provides oxygen enriched air (23-35%). These units are expected to help with the urgent requirement of respiratory interventions to treat breathlessness — one of the critical symptoms of Covid-19.
BMek: is a technology solution provider for AI, ML, IOT and embedded systems. It has been working in Healthcare, Life sciences and industrial automation. The company is developing
1) AI, Machine Learning, Data Analytics for
• Prediction of COVID 19 trends
• Develop text and data mining tools that can help the medical community (Researchers, Drug developers) develop answers to high priority scientific questions – Coronavirus literature collection available with over 29,000 articles, more than 13,000 of which have full text.
• Sentimental Analysis using twitter, facebook.
• “Pattern detection for Spread” using data from other COVID19 affected next stage countries.
2) Electronics Product Development Services – Converting idea to product
3) Surveillance for Social Distancing
4) Thermal Scanning and Analysis
FlytbaseLabs: (a subsidiary of Flytbase, USA and previously known as NavStik) provides drone agnostic software solutions to automate and scale drone operations. FlytNow developed by Flytbase helps with automated missions and monitor a large area on a remote cloud-based dashboard from a safe distance. FlytNow is being currently used in Gujarat for remote monitoring the COVID-19 lockdown.
Exocan Healthcare Technologies: The company aims to develop an affordable (under Rs. 500) rapid, and scalable diagnostic test for COVID-19. Capture cum enrichment of COVID-19 biomacromolecules ( RNA, proteins) from blood exosome omits the need of swab sampling for diagnosis. Swab sampling requires skilled manpower, is costly, and can’t be scaled up in a large population. Their test will require minimal quantities of blood (1 mL), and will be able to generate a report within 24 hours. Importantly, one can perform more than 5000 tests a day within a 500 sq ft lab. For this test, Exocan will leverae its ExoEnrich technology (patented) to capture blood exosomes followed by covid-19 biomacromolecules isolation and PCR detection for diagnosis.
Padcare Labs: is working on developing three products that could help with controlling the spread of the corona virus: (a) UVSAN- a room, closet and cabin disinfection system for hospitals and public places, (b)UVHANDY-a portable disinfection system, and (c) UVECO -a portable UV dustbin
SynThera Biomedical: is working on an easy-to-use non toxic SynClean surface disinfection kit, which will have two components: liquid medium in a spray bottle and an antimicrobial bioactive powder in a sealed packet. The two components just need to be mixed and shaken together prior to use. The proposed disinfecting solution can be used on multiple surface types and will offer both instant disinfection (through organic agents in the liquid medium) and longer term disinfection (through silver and copper ion release from the bioactive powder).
Green Pyramid Biosolutions: The company has already developed a ready-to-use biosurfactant-based formulation that can sanitize fruits and vegetables before consumption. The bio-surfactant identified by the company is also able to destroy/distort the virus by acting on it’s lipid-based outer structure, exactly the way normal surfactants do. In addition, it is stable in polar solvents and temperatures of up to 75 -80 degrees. The product has a good shelf life, and so can be used for developing hand sanitizer and surface disinfectants.
Atmen Technovention: The company has developed an endotracheal tube obstruction monitoring device. COVID19 patients often experience shortness in breath i.e. ARDS (Acute respiratory distress syndrome). All patients with this symptom are intubated using an endotracheal tube. Atmen’s device helps with monitoring the endotracheal tube for obstruction in real time. Currently, clinicians monitor the endotracheal tube manually, which needs an experienced person. The company is also developing portable and affordable ventilators.
Vidcare Innovations: is working on a sensitive rapid test for the detection of antibodies and specific proteins in samples from suspected COVID19 patients. The test will take only 15 minutes, and will provide results in a simple and easy to read format. The test is based on their patented ‘mu-sure’ platform technology that the company has developed to perform instrument-free quantitative assay of TSH for hypothyroidism detection.
Better Suits: is developing protective gear for frontline warriors and healthcare workers. They are developing a protective suit with the following properties: (a) reusable, breathable, and heat-absorbing fabric (b) smart indicators that can indicate contamination levels and (c) antiviral coating.
Jeevtronics: The company has developed the world’s first dual powered defibrillator. Thsi product is to be used in ICUs in the event of sudden cardiac arrest for VOVID19 patients at a crtical stage.
Embryyo: The company is working on microfluidic blood-plasma separation technology. The key value proposition of the technology is that a large quantity (around 100 – 400 uL of plasma from 1.5 – 5 mL of input whole blood in 15-30 minutes with an RBC separation efficiency of around 99%) of plasma can be obtained for downstream diagnostic tests, preserving the integrity of delicate analytes in the plasma as a result of microfluidic cell separation. The technology can be potentially used in developing blood based diagnostic tests for COVID where the plasma quality might play a crucial role in increasing the sensitivity of some such chemical-marker based test.
BioAptagen: Since the present SARS-2 diagnosis deploys PCR-based methods which are relatively expensive and cannot be made available at every diagnostic center due to requirement of sophisticated equipment set-up, the company aims to develop sequence-specific detection of the SARS-2 virus that could offer a point-of-care and low cost diagnostic.
DiagnoRite: The company has developed DiagnoPCR, an easy covid-19 molecular test.
Newndra Innovations: Their affordable and patented exoskeleton assistive device will help protect medical staff, heathcare workers and nurses from the fatigue and stress on their back due to long hours of work activities involving bending, twisting, frequent heavy lifting, and awkward static posture.
G2B Biologics: A manual intervention free mobile hand sanitizer station for workforce entry and exit based on video tracking with realtime feedback and data logging.
FUMA Labs: Mass sterilization device anda mobile app to meet demand and supply
Battery Pool: A dispatcher application that can be used for hyperlocal medicine delivery and diagnostics sample collection. To be used by pharmacies and diagnostics lab.