Outstanding UK Scientist Christofer Toumazou is Finalist for European Inventor Award: Rapid DNA Test on a USB Stick

April 29, 2014

LONDON and MUNICH, April 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ –

        - Toumazou developed game-changing rapid "do-it-yourself" DNA test
        - Microchip instead of genetics lab: analysis via USB stick saves time and money
        - British scientist is pioneer of personalised medical diagnostics
        - 50 patents secure prolific inventor Toumazou place in growth market worth
        - EPO President Benoît Battistelli: "Toumazou's work creates immense medical
          benefits and opens up unexpected opportunities."
        - Inventor Professor Toumazou: "In twenty years... doctors will be looking
          at your medical future instead of looking at your medical history."
        - Cosmetic application takes the stigma away from medical device

52-year-old UK top medical engineer Christofer Toumazou is considered to be a pioneer
in the field of personalised medical diagnostics. Thanks to his work, DNA can now be
analysed within minutes and outside a lab environment. Thus, medicine is taking a big step
from healing illnesses to preventing them. Acknowledging this achievement, the European
Patent Office (EPO) has nominated him as a finalist for the European Inventor Award 2014
in the category “Research”. Europe’s “Oscar” for technological innovation will be awarded
in Berlin on 17 June.

Having studied electrical engineering, Toumazou started his career developing
energy-efficient microchips for mobile phones. He turned out to be so successful that,
aged 33, he became the youngest professor ever at Imperial College London.

The UK scientist, who is of Cypriot descent, modelled his technology on the human
body’s own “local intelligence” principle for monitoring and supplying cells and organs
whereby local detection of conditions precisely govern the body’s own automatic
therapeutic response. Therefore, Toumazou uses special silicon microchips that are able to
immediately and locally analyse data to provide new, fast and easy applications in the
field of intelligent medical diagnostics.

“The ground-breaking results of Christofer Toumazou’s work underline the importance of
interdisciplinary research, especially in medical diagnostics. With his invention,
diagnosis becomes much faster and more cost-efficient. This paves the way for a medical
science that puts the focus on prevention. Knowing about health risks and taking early
action is better than any drug,” said EPO President Benoît Battistelli upon announcing
that Toumazou is a finalist for the European Inventor Award 2014.

Toumazou’s interest in genetic diseases was mainly brought about because of his son
Marcus, who suffers from a rare genetic kidney disease. “I felt the desperate need to
apply this technology to early detection,” he said. “If we could detect something early
enough it becomes preventative medicine and people like my son Marcus could have gone
about their lifestyle in a very different way.”

His revolutionary innovation of a rapid DNA test via a USB stick puts this concept
within reach. The invention is based on a microchip that detects genetic disorders in
human DNA within a few minutes. It is therefore possible to establish, for example, a
genetic predisposition to Alzheimer’s and other inherited diseases but also if a patient
is able to metabolise certain drugs. What makes the invention even more special is the
fact that the chip can be mounted on a USB stick which loads the results within 20 minutes
on a computer. Such a “do-it-yourself” DNA test could in the foreseeable future be offered
by pharmacies as a kind of a “pocket lab”.

        For more information, please contact:
        Oswald Schröder
        European Patent Office
        Tel. +49(0)89-2399-1800
        mobile: +49(0)163-8399-668

        Jeremy Philpott
        European Patent Office
        Tel: +49(0)89-2399-1805
        Mobile: +49-151-54404109

        Maria Diviney
        Shepard Fox Communications
        Tel. +44(0)2033-184491

SOURCE European Patent Office (EPO)

Source: PR Newswire

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