Xagenic 2014 logo

Project Sector:
Molecular Diagnostics

Potential Market Size:
Over $2.5 billion

Member Institution:
The University of Toronto (U of T), in conjunction with Boston College

Dr. Shana Kelly:

Dr. Edward Sargeant:

Xagenic Contact: Ihor Bozsko

Diagnosing Infectious Disease When Every Minute Counts

Ever been tested for an infectious disease?

Chances are your doctor took a blood sample and sent your results to a central laboratory for testing, resulting in a treatment delay of hours or days.

In the United States, $5 billion is spent each year on excess healthcare costs due to infectious disease transmission while patients wait for diagnosis. Antibiotic treatments are often unnecessarily prescribed, increasing drug resistance.

Diagnosing infectious diseases on-site represents an unmet need and a multi-billion dollar opportunity.

Xagenic’s AuRA™ Platform

Xagenic’s technology promises to radically transform the way infectious diseases are diagnosed by making it possible for molecular diagnostic testing to happen outside of clinical laboratories.

The company’s simple, fully-automated diagnostic platform allows on-site diagnosis of infectious diseases, which means physicians can make rapid treatment decisions and counsel patients while they are still in the clinic.

Xagenic’s AuRA™ technology, based on ultra sensitive microelectrode arrays jointly
developed by Dr. Shana Kelley and Dr. Edward Sargent at the University of Toronto, will transform the way patients receive care and are treated.

The inexpensive device, designed for ease-of-use with a range of assay types, can be used by healthcare professionals with the touch of a button and at point of care. The nanosensor is projected to quickly provide a readout, reducing delays, healthcare costs and potential for error associated with lengthy lab processes.

How AuRA™ Works

Nanostructured sensors, coupled with highly-amplified signals generated by an electrocatalytic reporter system, allow direct analysis of clinical samples.

The versatile technology has been validated with a variety of targets, cell types, and specimen types. In less than an hour, it provides rapid sample-to-answer diagnostic test results without need for enzymatic amplification.


Xagenic is currently developing its molecular diagnostic testing platform and lead tests designed for use in physician offices, clinics and hospital settings.

Led by Judith Blumstock and Joel Liederman, MaRS Innovation acted as the commercialization agent for this radically tiny invention with enormous market potential by providing:

  • early-stage assessment of the technology
  • intellectual property protection
  • business and technology development
  • industry introductions and liaising
  • accounting and legal services
  • HR and payroll services
  • support during Xagenic’s Series A financing

Additional Resources

Contact: Ihor Boszko, Xagenic Inc.