-- Genetic counselor algorithms identify at-risk patients to help shorten the rare, genetic
disease odyssey --
-- Next-generation sequencing data delivers personalized rare disease therapies in an equitable manner to underrepresented communities --
Horizon Therapeutics plc (Nasdaq: HZNP), in collaboration with MIT Solve, a marketplace for social impact innovation, is proud to announce two winning solutions of this year’s Horizon Prize, ThinkGenetic Inc. and Congenica. The winners will share $150,000 in funding to continue evolving their solutions for reducing the time it takes to be diagnosed with a rare disease.
ThinkGenetic uses genetic counselor curated algorithms to search health records to identify at-risk rare disease patients and educate them and their physicians on the condition, how to get tested, diagnosed and treated. Once identified, it works with the hospital system to educate physicians and patients on what the condition is, how to test for it, treat and manage it. ThinkGenetic CEO and founder, David Jacob is a genetic patient himself and plans to use this funding to expand ThinkGenetic to support more genetic conditions.
Congenica uses software to analyze next-generation sequencing data to provide a free-of-charge diagnostic solution for people from disadvantaged groups affected by rare conditions. In doing so, it also creates an unbiased data system that will help improve its diagnostic models. According to Congenica, ethnic minorities are likely to experience barriers to screening, diagnosis and treatment due to a variety of cultural and socioeconomic factors. This funding would allow Congenica to provide free access to its platform for the analysis and diagnosis of thousands of ethnic minority patients.
“Congratulations on being the first-ever winners of The Horizon Prize,” said Tim Walbert, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Horizon. “Estimates indicate rare disease patients spend nearly five years going to appointments, getting tests and seeing multiple healthcare providers before their disease is accurately diagnosed—this is unacceptable. We are inspired by the ingenuity behind ThinkGenetic and Congenica to improve time to diagnosis and the potential to improve quality of life for the nearly 400 million people affected by rare disease worldwide.”
“Congratulations to ThinkGenetic, Inc. and Congenica on this well-deserved recognition,” said Alex Amouyel, Executive Director, MIT Solve. “We are inspired by your work to help people with rare diseases get the care they need—faster, more accurately, and more equitably.”
The Horizon Prize is a first-of-its-kind global innovation challenge focused on speeding diagnosis and care for people impacted by rare disease. This year, visionaries, academics and inventors from a pool of more than 138,000 individuals in over 137 countries set out to solve, “How can technology help people with rare diseases get the right care faster and more accurately?”
Each year The Horizon Prize will pose a unique question to encourage innovators and entrepreneurs to try to solve a problem associated with the rare disease community. For more information on The Horizon Prize solutions visit https://solve.mit.edu/challenges/horizonprize.
Horizon is focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of medicines that address critical needs for people impacted by rare, autoimmune and severe inflammatory diseases. Our pipeline is purposeful: we apply scientific expertise and courage to bring clinically meaningful therapies to patients. We believe science and compassion must work together to transform lives. For more information on how we go to incredible lengths to impact lives, please visit www.horizontherapeutics.com and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
About MIT Solve
Solve is an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a mission to solve world challenges. Solve is a marketplace for social impact innovation. Through open innovation Challenges, Solve finds incredible tech-based social entrepreneurs all around the world. Solve then brings together MIT’s innovation ecosystem and a community of Members to fund and support these entrepreneurs to help them drive lasting, transformational impact. Join Solve on this journey at solve.mit.edu.