InteliSpark client Neurovascular Diagnostics, Inc. has been awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) grant worth $224,032 from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The grant is for the SBIR project “A Blood-Based Test to Identify Patients with Intracranial Aneurysm.” The goal of the SBIR project is to develop a novel blood diagnostic to detect unruptured intracranial aneurysms (IA) in asymptomatic patients.
About 2-5% of the U.S. population (about 6-17 million Americans) have an unruptured IA, and these individuals are largely asymptomatic and thus unaware of the potential danger they are in. Currently, there are not any good screening tools to identify patients with unruptured IAs. Due to inefficient technology, about 30,000 Americans suffer IA rupture each year without warning. The diagnostic screening technology developed in this project will identify people who have unruptured IAs, enabling patients to be monitored and receive preventative treatment, which can drastically reduce the rate of rupture. This project aims to develop a molecular diagnostic to detect biomarkers of unruptured aneurysms using the transcriptomes of circulating neutrophils. Preliminary results have shown that circulating neutrophils isolated from blood samples could be used to predict unruptured IA presence with 80% accuracy.
This Phase I project will increase the sample size of the previous discovery and validation cohorts to give more confidence in the discovered biomarkers as well as increase the accuracy of the proposed diagnostic.