June 2016 |
We have successfully finished the NIH I-Corps entrepreneur immersion program (March 2016- May 2016). We have assembled an I-Corp team composed of an experienced industry expert who is a Key Opinion Leader in the diagnostics industry Dr. Terry Robbins, a C-level officer, and the PI to do market research to improve and consolidate our commercialization plan. Our highly dedicated and accomplished I- Corps team conducted customer and stakeholder interviews to improve and pivot our commercialization plan. Through the NIH I-corps course, we discovered the actual needs for accurate and rapid dengue diagnostic. I-Corps was transformative in helping us define the optimal path for clinical adoption of our diagnostic test for dengue fever. The NIH I- Corps program also helped point the way to a real market and showed us we could translate our technology into a more tangible business.
We interviewed 112 customers (end-user) and experts to gauge their views on the technology and the marketplace. In some areas, the population of end-users is such that these end-users are also the experts. In this case, they were asked to comment from both perspectives to gain the necessary information. After 112 interviewing with village doctors, hospital doctors in South East Asia and South America, vaccine developers, DOD, CDC, WHO, distributors, manufacturers, partners, diagnostics companies, regulatory affair consultants, and KOLs etc., we learned that 1) We should pursue clinical validation leading to WHO or FDA approval, which will enable clinical adoption of their test; 2) Our customers are clinicians in Southeast Asia, South America, Ministry of Health, DOD, and WHO; and 3) vaccine developers are not the customers.