Mobile-enabled eye diagnostic tool raises $750,000

By Aditi Pai
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iCheckHCpatentAliso Viejo, California-based iCheck Health Connection, a developer of mobile apps for the early detection and tracking of eye diseases, raised $750,816 in funding this week, according to an SEC filing. InterWest Partners led the funding raise, founder David Huang told MobiHealthNews. This brings iCheckHC's total funding to $775,816.

InterWest Partners' portfolio includes investments in Doximity and Welltoc.

The new money will help iCheckHC hire more members to their team of 20 and bring their product closer to launch, Huang said. MobiHealthNews has learned that the company may change their name in the near future.

iCheckHC is developing "products that will screen for eye diseases and also perform home monitoring for certain eye diseases," on mobile devices, tablets and computers, according to Huang.

The startup has filed multiple patents. One patent was filed for a "system for documenting and recording of the pupillary red reflex test and corneal light reflex screening of the eye in infants and young children." The system is designed to run on a mobile device that has a camera and a light, according to the patent, which references the iPhone 4S as an example. The system is also meant to have a companion website that "allows users to upload captured images from the computing device, so that the images may be processed, analyzed, and recorded."

The rest of the patents describe a series of video games meant to monitor retinal diseases and visual field loss in glaucoma. Results of the video game are then "transmitted to a health care professional by telecommunications means to facilitate the diagnosis or monitoring of age-related macular degeneration or other relevant eye diseases". All patents were published in April and May of this year.

MobiHealthNews wrote about myVisionTrack, another company working on eye diagnostic software, in April, when the FDA cleared the product for prescription-only use. The clearance applies only when the software is run on the iPhone 4S.

Although iCheckHC appears to be software, other companies are working on hardware eye diagnostic tools. In June, EyeNetra raised $2 million for its product Netra-G, a piece of hardware that connects to a smartphone and measures nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. The company was an MIT Media Lab Camera Culture group spinoff. A few months prior, the Camera Culture group demoed its next eye diagnostic tool, eyeMITRA at TEDMED this year. This technology doesn’t snap on to mobile phones like EyeNetra and is instead worn as a pair of smart glasses that displays a realtime image of the wearer’s fundus.