Stream Bio wins SBRI Healthcare funding to develop test for heart attack biomarkers

January 14, 2021

Stream Bio, a UK-based company that develops and manufactures a range of innovative life science products, has announced a new project after winning funding through SBRI Healthcare’s ‘Urgent and Emergency Care’ competition. The project aims to develop a high-sensitivity quantitative and rapid point-of-care lateral flow diagnostic test for cardiac troponin I and troponin T – indicators of a heart attack. Such a test would greatly accelerate the current triage system for heart attacks.

Suspected heart attacks, or myocardial infarctions (MI), place a huge strain on the resources of the NHS. Of the average 1.24 million chest pain admissions a year, only approximately 20% will be diagnosed as heart attacks. This results in unnecessary admissions of non-heart attack cases, until lab-based tests give the ‘all clear’, costing the NHS more than £170 million each year. A high-sensitivity troponin point-of-care lateral flow test would improve efficiency in the NHS, reduce costs, enable earlier interventions, and prevent unnecessary hospital admissions.

Stream Bio aims to address this need through the application of its novel, highly sensitive diagnostic platform. The platform will use Stream Bio’s intensely bright and sensitive fluorescent nanotechnology – Conjugated Polymer Nanoparticles (CPNs™) – in a lateral flow assay to detect cardiac troponin I and T, high levels of which indicate MI. To achieve the quantitative detection necessary, Stream Bio has collaborated with Chelsea Technologies to develop a novel fluorometric reader, the combined system named Claritas. The reader is handheld, battery-powered and robust, making it ideal for use in an ambulance and emergency room setting.

Stream Bio’s CPNs™ have been shown to be up to 1000 times brighter than conventional fluorophores, allowing them to enhance a variety of life science research areas, as well as rapid diagnostics. Building on existing investment, Stream Bio’s successful entry into SBRI Healthcare’s ‘Urgent and Emergency Care’ competition has secured additional funding for the company to adapt the system for cardiac biomarkers. This funding reflects the potential of the project to improve emergency care for MI patients dramatically.

Andy Chaloner, CEO at Stream Bio, said:

“We’re extremely excited to be exploring the potential of our diagnostic platform for use in NHS urgent care, and very proud that SBRI Healthcare has recognised the potential of our technology. With this funding and support, we can develop our rapid, robust and portable testing system for MI, enabling key decisions to be made much more quickly at the point of care. This will benefit both patients and the health service in terms of time, cost and patient outcome.”

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by Editor