Stanford Alumni Scientists And Physicians Launch StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force

By Amit Chowdhry ● March 19, 2020
  • StartX, a startup community comprised of over 1,500 Stanford faculty and alumni founders, announced it has launched the StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force

StartX, a startup community comprised of over 1,500 Stanford faculty and alumni founders, announced it has launched the StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force — which was designated to provide solutions for the prevention, diagnostics, and treatment of the novel coronavirus. 

The group of scientists, physicians, and professor entrepreneurs will collaborate on outreach to government agencies, regulatory bodies, and healthcare systems in the interest of public health.

And among the leading-edge biotechs, medical device innovators, and digital health companies working to resolve the critical needs during the COVID-19 pandemic are physicians working with positive cases, companies with FDA cleared solutions and ones that are on the fast-track with the CDC. 

StartX is known as a nonprofit organization advancing the development of Stanford’s top entrepreneurs through experiential education and access to thousands of VCs and investors. And the founder community includes a diverse mix of 1,500 well-funded Growth-Stage Founders, tenured Stanford Professor founders, and highly-successful Stanford Alumni Founders. Altogether, StartX companies have raised $8 billion in funding with a combined valuation of more than $25 billion to date. And StartX’s Corporate Innovation program helps corporations quickly test market-ready technology from Stanford alumni founders through structured co-creation and pilot programs. 

Clinical partners of StartX Med companies include over 250 hospitals, 30,000 care centers, 50,000 physicians, and 65 million annual patient visits. And StartX Med founders also have the opportunity to utilize 2,000 square feet of shared wet lab space at the StartX facility, located down the street from Stanford University. 

The StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force is working to provide hope, flatten the curve, and combat the novel coronavirus by offering rapid tests suitable for drive through testing, nursing homes, and ER rooms with results in 10 minutes. And the StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force is working on applications and hardware to assess respiratory issues, rapid solutions to fight developing sepsis and correlating antibiotic resistance resulting from COVID-19 severe complications, and COVID-19 related applications for remotely monitoring quarantined patients and healthcare workers who have been exposed. Plus it is working on rapid RNA testing technologies and testing that provides information on the presence, type, and severity of infections.

And the StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force is working on solutions for optimizing hospital operations and supply chain tracking and solutions for automated quarantine management and remote virtual triage.

StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force is also working a centrifuge system that is readily deployable for remote sample collection and prep and a handheld device measuring temperature, lung sounds, airway pressure, pulmonary function, ECG, and SPO2. Plus it is focused on remote monitoring for respiratory diseases, and other StartX Med technologies already deployed in Wuhan, China and free access to the Bioz research platform for biopharma companies along with free virtual COVID-19 evaluation, screening, and escalation tool for any hospital in the U.S. to help preserve clinical resources for patients who warrant in-person care.

And the StartX Med therapeutics companies with new antiviral drugs are focused on treating COVID-19 and the most common lung disease caused by it (Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome) is accelerating their efforts to take their treatments into clinical settings.

“One of our first goals would be for existing StartX genetics companies to be able to ramp-up their current solutions for molecular testing of COVID-19 diagnostics and work with local and state officials and government agencies on deployment,” explained Dr. Michael Niaki, StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force Lead for the Diagnostics Subgroup.

The current StartX Med COVID-19 Task Force Participants include:

– Prevention: DawnLight Technologies, Luma Health, Mon Ami, Theranova, Tueo, and Qventus

– Diagnostics: Avails Medical, Eko, Enable Biosciences, Inflammatix, Lucira Health, Magnetic Insight Mendo, Nirmidas Biotech, Inc., ProbiusDx, Sandstone Diagnostics, Sensio Air, Sentinel Healthcare, Spire Health, Subtle Medical, and Quantumcyte

– Treatment: Augmedix, Bioz, Bright.md, Chimera Bio, GEn1E, Globavir BioSciences, Guided Clarity, InfiniGene, KangarooHealth, OMNY, Orcabio, Parzival, Potrero, Qventus, Spot Biosystems, Line Up Health, and Wellsheet

“As the number of positive cases continue to soar in the outbreak of COVID-19, there is an imminent need for reducing barriers companies are experiencing with therapeutic medical breakthroughs needing to be deployed,” stated Joseph Huang, CEO of StartX. “We’ve always said that our community of industry leaders can achieve more as a group than as individuals and this is a prime example of how quickly StartX companies and the Stanford entrepreneurship ecosystem can mobilize and come together in times of crisis.”

Along with partnering in outreach to government agencies and public health offices for immediate deployment of life-saving medical solutions, the coalition will offer investors a special COVID-19 Task Force version of StartX’s Online Investor Demo Day viewings in order to coordinate introductions between StartX Med companies tackling COVID-19 and venture capitalists specifically interested in investing in this space. The StartX General Investor Demo Day and COVID-19 specific viewings will begin March 19, 2019.