The platform - Simoa 2.0 – is 1000x more sensitive than traditional immunoassays according to Quanterix CEO Kevin Hrusovsky who told us “it uses single molecule measurements to access previously undetectable proteins."
“The technology is based on the isolation of individual immunocomplexes on paramagnetic beads using standard ELISA reagents,” explained Hrusovksy. “This allows a 'digital' readout of each individual bead to determine if it is bound to the target analyte or not.”
Then, using a unique, “smart” disc, developed by Sony DADC, high-density arrays of 40 femtoliter microwells are created and Simoa can detect a signal from single molecules of labeled analyte.
Advancing personalized medicine
In addition to aiding drug developers analysis of biochemical pathways, the platform could also pave the way new diagnostic tests and improved treatments Hrusovsky said.
For example, using Sioma 2.0 Quanterix has been able to detect minute quantities of PSA protein after radical prostatectomy and accurately determine the likelihood of relapse. The firm has also used it to predict neurological function in Alzheimer's disease by tracking amyloid-beta 42 levels.
“What this means” Hrusovsky explained “is that with a simple blood test, doctors can now detect and diagnose diseases before symptoms appear and with the majority of these diseases, early detection is the difference between life and death.”
“By going after the Invitro Diagnostic (IVD) for hospital laboratories first, we’ve built a box that is ‘bleed to read,’ meaning you can simply press a button and find out the answer.”
The privately-owned firm claims to have experienced “tremendous growth” due in part to a $800,000 grants from GE Healthcare and the NFL’s Head Health Challenge to fund research in concussion detection.
“With this money and additional funding we plan to continue to improve our technology and fuel our go-to-market strategy,” added Hrusovksy.
The company is working towards a Simoa 3.0, with plans to reduce sample sizes, increase sensitivity and improve ease of use.
Quanterix also has plans for an IPO according to Hrusovksy who said that while the precise timing will depend on the state of the market the firm expects to go public next year.
He added that the company will also look at acquiring healthcare and diagnostic tech firms to further its growth.