Spindiag: New financing for the market introduction of corona quick test

This Freiburg-based start-up wants to use a capital increase of EUR 16.3 million to bring its mini-lab for testing for corona viruses on to the market before the end of 2020.

Probenentnahme für Corona-Schnelltest

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At the end of May, Spindiag completed a fourth round of funding with more than EUR 16.3 million to promote its SARS-CoV-2 quick testing system. Think.Health Ventures has joined previous investors from the health care sector in providing funding, with this funding round following on from grant funds of six million euros announced in April by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Housing of Baden-Württemberg, which has been maintaining the company together with the Hahn-Schickard Institute for Microanalysis Systems.

The ‘Rhonda’ fully-automatic testing system is small and mobile enough for an analysis to be made on the spot. Swab samples from the nose and throat are placed in the test cartridge, which already contains all the reagents needed for testing. Then the test cartridge is placed rather like a CD into the analysis machine and processed fully automatically. The result is ready in just 30 to 40 minutes. Another advantage of this system is that manual pipetting of the swab samples, with the increased risk of infection it brings, is no longer necessary. This means that the machine can be used where quick results are especially important, such as in care homes and other health care institutions, as well as in airports and firms.

The Freiburg start-up originally developed the Rhonda testing system for testing for multi-resistant bacteria. At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic they added a quick test for SARS-CoV-2 to the testing system, which is now to be its first product to reach the market. The system is currently undergoing analytical trials. The firm expects it to be approved for marketing in Germany and the EU before the end of 2020. The cost of a test should be significantly below EUR 50.

Since 2007, Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) has been supporting the development of the SpinDiag system with various funding initiatives. Participation in the “Innovationsakademie Biotechnologie” in November 2013 gave the start-up team the crucial boost for its final business orientation. Freiburg-based Spindiag GmbH was founded in 2016. The firm has so far received EUR 24.9 million in four funding rounds for product development.