Strathclyde spin-out has double success in Life Sciences awards

Stuart Hannah, CEO of Microplate DX is presented with one of the awards

Microplate Dx, which is developing a rapid, low-cost, antibiotic susceptibility test, has won two awards at the prestigious annual OBN Life Sciences Awards.

The Glasgow-based spin-out from the University of Strathclyde, won Best Start-up Medtech Company and the BioSeed 'One to Watch' awards.

Right antibiotic

Microplate Dx is developing a test which indicates the correct antibiotic for each patient in under 45 minutes - significantly quicker than current methods, which can take several days. The technology is sensor-based and designed for use at the point-of-care, meaning patients get the right antibiotic treatment straight away.

Dr Stuart Hannah, CEO and co-founder of Microplate Dx, said:

It is truly humbling to have won not just one, but two awards at this year’s OBN Awards.

“We were up against some very strong competition, and the fact we came away as winners in two categories is testament to the hard work of the Microplate Dx team, and all our supporters.

“It really helps validate our mission, and what we’re doing every day to help tackle antimicrobial resistance.”

Globally, there were an estimated five million antimicrobial resistance (AMR)-associated deaths in 2019, and by 2050, antimicrobial resistance could kill more than cancer and diabetes combined.

Around 60% of women report at least one UTI in their lifetime, and one in three will have at least one symptomatic UTI necessitating antibiotic treatment by the age of 24. UTIs are also the cause of one in four life-shortening sepsis cases.

Stuart Rose, CEO of OBN, said: “The life sciences industry worldwide is facing some tough headwinds, but it is exactly times like these when real innovation and great management teams shine.

“This year has seen not only the largest number of entrants in our 14-year history but also the quality has been extremely high, making the final judging no easy task.”

OBN is a not-for-profit membership organisation for the life sciences industry.

The Awards, which are in their 14th year, highlight companies at all stages of development, recognising inspirational leadership, innovation, and novel approaches to unmet clinical need and the delivery of real-life tangible results.  

Entrepreneurial training

Microplate Dx has also received support from Strathclyde Inspire, the University’s flagship entrepreneurship programme, which offers entrepreneurial training and opportunities to every student and staff member.

It was also recently selected to join Scottish Enterprise’s High Growth Ventures (HGV) portfolio, which will provide a range of strategic support to help the company achieve its significant scale-up ambitions.

 Prior to spinout, Microplate Dx was supported by £280,000 from Scottish Enterprise via its High Growth Spinout Programme (HGSP), and a Royal Society of Edinburgh Enterprise Fellowship worth £100,000.