Greek startup BIOPIX-T is proceeding with the sale of a portable molecular diagnosis device named “Pebble” as well as its compatible coronavirus test, turning the research that the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology of the Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (IMBB-FORTH) has conducted at Iraklio on Crete into a commercial product.
The startup has already started selling its product to small diagnostic centers and clinics in Greece and Cyprus, and it intends to promote it also in North Africa and other European countries.
According to the company statement, this is Greece’s first portable molecular diagnosis device (Pebble qcLAMP Platform) based on a technology that allows it to be used at the point of healthcare. The Covid test that is used with it bears the name “COV19 qcLAMP kit.”
Both the Pebble and the diagnostic test have been registered with the National Pharmaceuticals Organization (EOF) and shared with other European Union member-states.
The cost of the device is lower than the conventional PCR equipment that is also heavier and is harder to carry to where the patient may be: The BIOPIX-T device costs some 750 euros, while each Covid test costs about €9.
Furthermore, the BIOPIX-T test takes just 30 minutes, and gradually the company expects to have more features of the device certified and utilized, such as its capacity to perform tests using saliva samples.
For the process of development and certification of its products, BIOPIX-T has received initial financing from the Patra Science Park, and recently completed a financing round led by Greek venture capital fund Metavallon. This has included Eleven VC, which is based in Bulgaria and has Greek private investors from the healthcare sector.
The Greek startup is now in talks to raise more funds from private investors.
In the course of the products’ development and the continuous tests related to the safety of the device – as is necessary by European law for certification – the company completed clinical studies in Iraklio, in Athens and in Switzerland.