Local biomedical company Integrated Bioscience Design (IBD) yesterday received a gold medal at the annual Invention and New Product Exposition (INPEX) in the US city of Pittsburgh, for its “R1” RNA biochip, which the firm said is a patient-oriented “precision medication” tool to help identify the most suitable drug or supplement for each patient.
The firm also received a special award from event international judging committee chairman Andrej Skrinjar.
IBD marketing and planning manager Aaron Chen (陳彥任) said the chip can detect the condition of patients’ health by testing the expression of their ribonucleic acid (RNA), which in turn helps to determine how effective drugs and supplements are for patients.
Likening DNA to a book and RNA to its chapters, Chen said that a persons health condition can be reflected by studying different segments of their RNA.
The method would greatly aid doctors in prescribing medicine and reducing the chance of patients receiving improper treatment, as well as significantly helping to determine the efficacy of newly developed drugs and supplements, he said.
The chip is especially helpful for determining suitable supplements for people with less than optimal health and who could potentially develop diseases, since people only exhibit minor symptoms at the early stages of an illness.
He said that during a clinical test, for which the company contracted Chung Shan Medical University, performed on 250 potential diabetes patients, the chip was able to find the best product for each patient based on their congenital constitutions and helped lower their glucose level without the use of insulin.
He said that supplements are a safer option than medication for people in suboptimal health.
“Since people respond differently to drugs, a drug that proves effective for a patient might not work for another and the ineffective part of medication becomes the side effects,” he said.
He said that the potential of genetic screening market worldwide is estimated at US$17 billion and he is confident that, with solid patenting strategies in place, the firm will shine in the industry.
He said that the company hopes to use the chip to leverage the global supplement market, where there are even more business opportunities than in the genetic screening market.
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