FAST Diagnostics, a developer of a technology for the rapid assessment of kidney function, announced today that it has received additional federal funding to further develop and validate its device technologies.
The company, which is based in the Indiana University Emerging Technologies Center on the IUPUI campus, is using a $1 million Phase II Small Business Technology Transfer grant from the National Institutes of Health for further development and trials of its early detection technology. Grant procurement assistance was provided by the state's SBIR/STTR office. FAST Diagnostics is also a 2008 recipient of a $2 million grant from the state's 21st Century Research and Technology Fund.
"We know that FAST Diagnostics is doing great work and pioneering research that will increase the quality of people's lives," said Mitch Roob, Secretary of Commerce and chief executive officer of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. "Continued federal funding just reinforces what we already know about the tremendous potential our 21 Fund companies have."
FAST Diagnostics' technology tracks the body's kidney function, known as glomerular filtration rate, or GFR, by injecting inert markers into a patient's bloodstream. A fiber optic device inserted into the body through a catheter tracks the molecules, measuring how effectively the body filters waste giving an accurate filtration rate reading in only 40 minutes. Current measurement procedures can take up to 24 hours for an initial reading and several additional hours for follow up readings.
"We are very pleased for the National Institutes of Health's additional support for our development of this critical product. It continues to validate not only the soundness of the technology, but the critical need in the market," said Joe Muldoon, chief executive officer of FAST Diagnostics. "We are excited to advance our whole product development, move into pre-clinical trials, and know that we are closer to eliminating some human suffering and improving AKI patient outcomes."
Originally developed by researchers at the Indiana University School of Medicine, FAST Diagnostics is partnering with Purdue University to assist in pre-clinical trials, and the Rose Hulman Institute of Technology for development of the device. Muldoon expects human trials to begin in the second quarter of 2010 with a full commercial launch of the product anticipated in 2012. FAST Diagnostics, which currently employs 12 associates, plans to create up to 65 new research, marketing and sales positions to support the device's commercial launch.
"There is a clear unmet need for improved diagnostics in the acute kidney injury field in general. A system that increases either the speed or accuracy of the diagnosis of AKI, for example by detecting reduced GFR, would be a most useful addition to our diagnostic arsenal," said Dr. Andrew Shaw a cardiothoracic anesthesiologist and critical care physician at the Duke University School of Medicine.
FAST Diagnostics is one of nearly 70 businesses awarded a 21st Century Fund grant since January 2006. During that time, the fund has invested more than $90 million in high-tech Indiana entrepreneurial companies that collectively have the potential to create thousands of new jobs.
About FAST Diagnostics
FAST Diagnostics' patent-pending diagnostic device and method provides rapid and accurate measurement of true kidney function for use in hospitals, intensive care units, cardiac catheterization labs, and physician offices. This technology gives healthcare providers a valued diagnostic tool for improving outcomes for 3.5 million patients with acute kidney injury annually and the 40 million Americans suffering from chronic kidney disease.
Created by Governor Mitch Daniels in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Daniels. Indiana Secretary of Commerce Mitch Roob serves as the chief executive officer of the IEDC. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.