The spin-off was created at INESC TEC, but has been tallying “families” all over the world. In the United States of America (U.S.A), iLoF – Intelligent Lab on Fiber signed a financing agreement with Microsoft’s M12 fund and with Mayfield, for $1M, in order to support interventions in three fields: Alzheimer’s, cancer and COVID- 19.
The iLoF spin-off created a patented technology for detecting nano-structures in fluids. Thanks to a virtual platform, iLoF digitises and stores biological profiles of patients and disease biomarkers.
The American market is one of the largest in the world in terms of clinical studies; in this sense, the one million dollars translate into a significant increase in the company’s business.
“Our mission is to accelerate a new era of personalised medicine, thus supporting the industry in the development, selection and democratisation of personalised treatments for patients worldwide. The funds will help accelerate our collaborations with clinical partners in Europe and the U.S.A., bringing us closer to our goal of making the drug development experience much more human and convenient for patients, while making the process much more efficient and flexible for the industry”, said Luís Valente, CEO of iLoF.
Based on a blood sample, iLoF technology is able to perform the analysis of multiple biological profiles, identifying, for example, whether a patient has biomarkers that indicate Alzheimer’s or a more or less aggressive type of cancer, or even if he/she will suffer from symptoms caused by COVID -19 or remain asymptomatic.
The funding stems from the fact that the spin-off is part of the “Portugal to Take Off” acceleration programme, launched by AICEP – Agency for Investment and Foreign Trade of Portugal, in order to help Portuguese tech companies entering the California market.
ILoF, which is also a U.Porto spin-off, is currently working with hospitals and two of the four largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. The team is currently supporting the clinical staff of the Hospital de S. João to stratify COVID-19 patients, identifying those who should be hospitalised or sent to isolation at home.
In late 2019, iLoF received 2 million dollars in funding from an EIT Health acceleration programme. The spin-off employs 15 people, and plans to hire five more by the end of 2020. The development team is incubated at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto, supported by the Oxford Foundry, the accelerator at the University of Oxford, in England.