ENTvantage Dx, is an early-stage diagnostics company that provides Primary Care and ENT physicians with timely information on the cause of ear, nose and throat illnesses with rapid, in-office diagnostic tests. Our first product is for rapid, in-office diagnosis of bacterial rhinosinusitis by offering a first-of-its-kind diagnostic kit that can definitively diagnose bacterial sinusitis and differentiate it from the more common viral sinusitis. The product will allow primary care physicians and otolaryngologists to easily take mucus samples and perform a rapid, accurate, point-of-care lateral flow assay to determine if a patient is positive for bacterial pathogens commonly associated with bacterial rhinosinusitis. This information will allow physicians to reduce the amount of antibiotics used to treat sinusitis, increase revenue to the clinic and reduce the number of antibiotic resistant infections.
ENTvantage Dx will offer a diagnostic kit for collection of mucus samples from patient sinuses and a lateral flow assay to allow determination of three pathogens associated with 90% of bacterial sinusitis; Haemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
The diagnostic kit consists of mucus collection devices and a lateral flow immunochromatographic assay. The mucus collection device, intended for use during a routine physician office visit, allows physicians to easily obtain a mucus sample from the sinus region and after the mucus sample is collected, a lateral flow assay is performed. If the test is positive for any of the three bacterial pathogens, the patient has bacterial sinusitis and is prescribed an appropriate antibiotic and/or steroid regimen and, if negative, the patient has viral sinusitis and no antibiotics are administered.
Additional collection devices and tests are envisioned for diagnosing ear and lung infections.
Joe Skraba has 30 years of experience in commercialization and sales of a broad range of medical devices, in-vitro diagnostic devices and biotech products.
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Who we are
The founders met with 2002 when they founded LabNow, a diagnostic startup based on University of Texas technology. We both have years of experience in medical devices, diagnostic products and pharmaceutical product development. ENTvantage technology was developed at The Ohio State University and the company holds exclusive worldwide license for the 2 patents. We look forward to intial investment that allows the company to develop its first product for bacterial sinusitis detection.
Why we're doing this
The lack of a diagnostic test for sinusitis has led to the overuse of antibiotics to treat symptoms which are usually caused by viruses. The overuse of antibiotics leads to antibiotic resistant infections which are costly to treat and lead to many deaths in the US. Commercialization of this technology will help physicians make the right diagnosis and only prescribe antibiotics to those 15% of patients suffering from bacteria caused sinusitis and not the 85% with viral sinusitis.
Most impressive accomplishment
Joe has developed medical devices that have been implanted in over 1 million people and have sold for over $5 billion. He has co-founded three companies, has managed a large R&D organization at a multinational medical device company and introduced dozens of medical device products to the market. He has been a part of a team that raised over $40 million in venture funding, has been awarded 4 patents and was recipient of the George Kozmetsky award for academic achievement at UT.
Rick Hawkins is currently the CEO of Lumos Pharma and Chairman of ENTvantage Dx, both in Austin TX. Rick is a serial entrepeneur, founding multiple companies over the last 30 years including Pharmaco that merged with PPD to form PPD Pharmaco, Sensus Drug Development that was sold to Pfizer, Covance Biotechnology Services, Inc., sold to Akzo Nobel, Inc., and LabNow, a diagnostic device company. He serves as a Director for SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc. (SCLN) and Cytori Therapeutics (CYTX).
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