Geneix helps doctors find better treatment – Startup of the week

Welcome to the sixth episode of the Elevator Pitch series 4.

Every week we publish a 30 second pitch from the latest intake of the Elevator Pitch. These leading startups join an alumni group that includes the likes of YPlan, Hassle, import.io and Glow, and has to-date raised over $36m.

In this series we took the founders on a cab ride unlike any other for the most exciting pitch of their lives.

Geneix helps doctors use patients’ DNA data to find better treatments.

They take the vast amount of evidence on how genetic variation affects the response of different medications, and use it to inform decisions on a patient-by-patient basis.

This makes prescribing drugs easier, reducing the trial-and-error problem doctors have when finding the right treatment.

One size doesn’t fit all

Founder Mark Bartlett came up with the idea when studying genetics at University College London.

He noticed that although there’s so much evidence linking genes and medication, this information is not used when prescribing.

So in 2012 Bartlett set up Geneix to speed up the process of translating that data for the benefit of patients.

The software helps doctors identify people who are unlikely to respond to a treatment, and help them choose one that’s more appropriate.

We’re solving the ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to prescribing.

Building the ecosystem

Bartlett says the market is relatively new in the UK, although the different healthcare systems in the US mean there is more traction across the pond.

However, 100,000 Brits are having their genome sequenced by 2017 due to Genomics England – expected to be the largest genetic database in the world.

Bartlett says this represents a developing ecosystem for Geneix’s solutions.

Growth and validation

A grant from Innovate UK‘s IC tomorrow programme and a place on Wayra UK have helped the company grow, but Bartlett says getting the support from stakeholders such as the NHS and laboratories has been very rewarding.

When we started most people we met would only feedback that we are too early and using genetics to guide prescribing will not happen for at least 10 years.

This is changing and is creating an extremely exciting environment to operate.

Bartlett hopes to sign up two hospital partners in the coming months to help validate Geneix’s products.

The company’s latest product will be ready to go to market next year.