Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND)

While abroad attending the BTWC, the iGEM Calgary team arranged a meeting with the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), the foremost authority on non-profit diagnostic systems internationally. We sought to meet with them to better understand the world of diagnostics, as well as seeking their opinion regarding the feasibility and demand for our proposed device.

Our meeting with Dr. Ranald Sutherland proved to be insightful and informative. We learned how you could expect that the consumer cost of a device will be nearly double that of production costs once all taxes and fees are levied. He also advised the team to redirect their focus from being simply a multi-diagnostic to a ‘reflex test’. A ‘reflex test’ would be administered only when presented with a negative diagnosis from a rapid malaria diagnostic, which functions much more quickly then the assay being designed. This is an important marketing tool, as direct competition with these already existing and highly efficient technologies would be difficult and the project might not prevail.

FIND has offered to be a continued resource for our team should we have any more concerns or questions. Their consultation has given our team a strategy for creating a novel, yet practical diagnostic tool that would fill an important need in infectious disease identification.