Foothold Labs

Next Generation Rapid Diagnostics

About Foothold Labs

Biosensing will provide the foundation for next generation rapid diagnostic systems. We use biology as a circuit to create a portable, next generation diagnostic platform that uses highly sensitive and selective biosensors to cost effectively detect infectious disease related proteins at very low concentrations in saliva in 5 minutes. Our devices are cloud connected for data sharing, aggregation, and continuous disease surveillance reporting to decision makers. Our biggest advantage is that each test provides a quantitative report of copies of live virus present in saliva. This allows for high fidelity contact tracing and instant on-site assessment of risk to the public at points of entry, therefore slowing the spread of the next pandemic.

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Problem statement

The value of diagnostic tests and tools in healthcare is indisputable, whether it be for human performance, monitoring of patient recovery, pandemic pathogen detection, or medical prescription adherence. While traditional diagnostic testing methods have progressed immensely in recent decades, there are still non-ideal aspects of common testing methods that prevent them from being more widely accessible. For example, they are commonly analog (i.e., not always a simple yes/no result), use specialized equipment and require trained personnel. These lab diagnostics are also expensive and typically done in centralized labs, which requires time for transport and/or multi-day analysis as well complex sample preparation steps. In other words, for as far as we’ve come in recent decades, we still do not have diagnostic capabilities for most applications of need that can support in-field testing that is rapid, rugged, fast, affordable, reliable, and requires minimal user training.

Traction information

1. NIH RADx Fast Track Award ($1.7MM) Pending
2. Air Force AFWERX Phase II Award ($750K) Pending
3. USSOCOM Nanotechnology SBIR Phase I ($150K) Pending
4. Pre-Employment Screening Pilot Project Ongoing
5. Throat Cancer Saliva Screening Point of Care Pilot Project Starting Aug. 2021

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