EKF Diagnostics Holdings plc (AIM: EKF), the AIM listed point-of-care business, announces that it has entered into a non-exclusive Preferred Partner Arrangement (the “Agreement”) with Mount Sinai Innovation Partners (“MSIP”). MSIP is responsible for driving the real-world application and commercialisation of discoveries and inventions made within the Mount Sinai Health System (“MSHS”), New York’s largest integrated healthcare delivery system, encompassing eight hospitals, a leading medical school, and a large network of ambulatory practices throughout the greater New York region.
EKF has established a longstanding and close working relationship with MSIP, through the highly successful spin-off of Renalytix AI plc, the developer of artificial intelligence-enabled diagnostics for kidney disease, and in collaboration with the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (“Mount Sinai”), the medical school of MSHS. This new agreement provides EKF with advanced access to further innovative commercial opportunities arising from MSHS owned technologies managed by MSIP. Such opportunities benefit from a clinician and demand-focused approach to developing commercially relevant healthcare products and services, and access to deep domain expertise in clinical disciplines and academia, commercial healthcare enterprises and other key stakeholders in the US healthcare market. EKF has had considerable success in developing and commercialising healthcare technologies internationally, both directly and with major partners.
In connection with the Agreement, the Company has signed a non-binding term sheet with Mount Sinai, which will allow the Company to explore the opportunity to support the licensing of technology originating from Mount Sinai to establish a novel digital health platform for earlier intervention in and better management of patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (“IBD”).
IBD, including Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, is one of the most costly and complex incurable disease categories, with up to $31.6 billion estimated to be spent annually on IBD patient care in the United States alone1. IBD is a growing global health challenge with more than 5 million patients estimated worldwide2, including up to 3 million patients in the US3. Most of the 70,000 new patients being diagnosed each year in the US are under the age of 354.
Mount Sinai has been at the forefront of research and treatment of Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease was named for the Mount Sinai physician Burrill B. Crohn, MD, after he and his colleagues first described the condition in 1932. Better evaluation and personalised management of IBD patients, including the implementation of appropriate care delivery pathways in a timely manner, is expected to deliver better healthcare outcomes (including quality of life) and on a more cost-effective basis than current approaches.
Julian Baines, Chief Executive Officer of EKF, said: “Through our mutual collaboration with RenalytixAI we have built a very successful working partnership with leading medical innovators at Mount Sinai, which has already delivered considerable value to EKF shareholders. This new agreement with Mount Sinai provides a framework to explore other commercial opportunities together and to select and support pioneering medical approaches that could make a major difference to people’s lives around the world, as well as much-needed improvements in healthcare economics.”
1 Mehta, F; Am J Manag Care. 2016;22: S51-60
2 European Federation of Crohn's & Ulcerative Colitis Associations (EFCCA) http://www.efcca.org/en/fact-sheet-ibd
3 Dahlhamer JM, Zammitti EP, Ward BW, Wheaton AG, Croft JB. Prevalence of inflammatory bowel disease among adults aged ≥18 years—United States, 2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2016;65(42):1166–1169.https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/65/wr/mm6542a3.htm.
4 The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA)
EKF Diagnostics Holdings plc
Christopher Mills, Non-Executive Chairman
Julian Baines, CEO
Richard Evans, Finance Director and COO
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About EKF Diagnostics Holdings plc
EKF is a leading point-of-care diagnostics and central laboratory assay manufacturer with an estimated 80,000 hemoglobin, hematocrit, HbA1c, glucose and lactate analyzers in regular use across more than 100 countries. EKF specializes in developing tests for use in anemia and diabetes diagnosis and management, as well as providing a portfolio of reagents for use in clinical chemistry analyzers.