San Diego-based Biolinq, a digital health company specializing in minimally invasive continuous glucose monitoring, raised $10 million in Series A financing. The round was led by M Ventures, in collaboration with Hikma Ventures.
Biolinq is currently working on a skin applied, minimally-invasive electrochemical biosensor platform for diabetes patients, which analyzes biomarkers in the interstitial fluid to provide actionable health information. The funding will enable the company to expand its team, and get its product through the clinical validation trials necessary for FDA approval.
“We are really expanding our team quite rapidly,” Tangney told MobiHealthNews. “We have been really capital efficient up until this point and we’ve been able to get a lot of work done.”
In the future Tangney said the company is looking to explore opportunities that tie into the artificial pancreas, so that patients won’t have to do anything manually.
“We are really hoping to create something that is easy to use, totally seamless and minimally invasive,” he said.
One of the company's investors, Hikma Ventures, said in a statement that it is looking to employ the Biolinq's technology within Middle East and North Africa.
“Chronic diseases like diabetes affect millions of people worldwide with a high prevalence in the Middle East and North Africa; markets we know well,” Lana Ghanem, managing director of Hikma Ventures, said in a statement. “We look forward to working with the Biolinq team and our co-investors to bring this pioneering technology to patients in need of a novel solution to continuously monitor their glucose levels, enabling them to live healthier lives.”
The product could work well with this emerging market due to its ease of use and affordability, Tangney said.
The company was first founded by Tangney and Josh Windmiller and called Electrozyme. In the beginning the company focused on printed sensor technology that focused on sweat monitoring for biofitness.
In 2015 the company changed its name and focus. After securing multiple grants the pair was able to further develop the product and focus on minimally invasive approaches to examining interfacial fluid.
Several companies have reported working on alternatives to needles for CGM. Glucose sensing contact lens have been in the news in recent years, despite few updates on Novartis and Google's announced partnership to work on the wearables. Medella Health is competing with the industry giants to be the first to develop the first glucose sensing contracts, and in 2016 raised $1.4 million in funding to develop the product.
Currently, there is no reliable, accurate way to measure blood glucose without actually drawing blood, either through tiny needles in the CGM or with a finger prick device.