Austin, TX – October 13, 2020 – Angstrom Bio, Inc. today announces the launch of AMPD™, its nanopore sequencing and machine learning powered platform for high-accuracy, high-frequency, low-cost COVID-19 and respiratory pathogen testing. AMPD leverages the extreme resolution and bandwidth of nanopore sequencing to provide the accuracy and volume necessary to detect the earliest stages of exposure to pathogens like SARS-CoV-2 and influenza and to enable schools and places of work to reopen safely and confidently.
Angstrom will partner with businesses, schools, and public sector organizations to implement cost-effective testing programs designed to maximize employee and stakeholder safety and to minimize the potential for operational disruption. The company intends to bring more than 1,000,000 results per day online in 2021, at prices that enable nearly any organization to have access to repeated, high-quality testing.
“Despite the tremendous progress made in diagnostics since the beginning of the pandemic, it is clear that testing today remains an area plagued by too many tradeoffs between availability, accuracy, and speed, as well as ease of collection, cost, and adaptability,” said Carlos F. Santos, Ph.D., Angstrom’s CEO. “We designed AMPD to eliminate the need for such tradeoffs. By leveraging the extraordinary resolution and bandwidth of nanopore sequencing and the power of our machine learning-driven diagnostic pipelines, and by rethinking pre-COVID-19 diagnostic workflows, we have been able to design a platform that can provide the extreme scale and accuracy required to meet the unprecedented challenges posed by COVID-19.”
At the heart of AMPD is a novel nucleotide chemistry and computational biology platform designed to harness the bandwidth and resolution of Oxford Nanopore Technologies’ nanopore Third-Generation Sequencing (TGS) systems. Unlike diagnostic systems that rely upon fluorescence-driven workflows for diagnostic analysis, nanopore TGS counts individual DNA molecules that pass through each of hundreds of nano-scale pores in a specially-designed membrane. The combination of single-molecule resolution and parallelism allow for the processing of tens of thousands of diagnostic results per AMPD run, while enabling orders of magnitude greater sensitivity than is currently available. This makes AMPD ideal for parties that require timely access to affordable, repeated testing, but that cannot compromise safety.
“Our team and collaborators have been working tirelessly to show that there is a new and far better way to provide diagnostic testing,” said Angstrom COO Jonathan Feldmann. “COVID-19 has simultaneously increased the stakes and reduced the room for error across the entire medical system. We think AMPD is uniquely able to meet this challenge, and we are excited to begin to demonstrate this with our partners and clients.”
Around the core technologies of AMPD, Angstrom has designed an operational and processing workflow that seeks to minimize patient discomfort and organizational disruption, without sacrificing accuracy or turnaround-time. AMPD utilizes a simple, self-collected saliva sample that not only avoids the discomfort associated with traditional swabs. Samples are registered and collected on-site using simple workflows then processed in an automated AMPD facility, with results delivered within 24 hours.
Angstrom is launching AMPD at pilot-scale in Austin, with plans to bring multiple AMPD facilities online through the remainder of 2020 and into 2021. The company also has an ongoing collaboration with the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research to evaluate AMPD for settings relevant to the military. To learn more about AMPD and about how Angstrom can help your organization implement testing programs to ensure operational safety and continuity, please visit angstrom.bio.
Angstrom Bio leverages the power of third-generation sequencing to develop new classes of information-rich, sequencing-based molecular diagnostics. The Company’s AMPD™ (Angstrom Massively Parallel Diagnostics) platform employs proprietary PCR chemistry and bioinformatics to enable the use of nanopore third-generation sequencers for the analysis of diagnostic samples - thereby overcoming the sample throughput, targets-per-sample, and genomic information limitations of legacy qPCR technologies while also improving upon the cost, turnaround time, and sample identity challenges inherent to sequencing-by-synthesis platforms. AMPD was validated in collaboration with the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and can be deployed in moderate and high throughput formats capable of processing anywhere from tens to tens-of-thousands of samples per day. Angstrom is developing a library of multi- pathogen panels on AMPD, with an initial focus on respiratory pathogens. The Company is headquartered in Austin, TX.