Geneoscopy has developed a novel methodology to reliably and consistently extract stool-derived eukaryotic RNA (seRNA) transcripts and detect changes in gene expression. This provides Geneoscopy a platform to harness the power of seRNA to detect, prevent, and guide treatment for gastrointestinal disease. Geneoscopy is currently developing a diagnostic test for the detection and prevention of colorectal cancer in human and a diagnostic test to differentiate GI lymphoma from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in cats. Geneoscopy is also exploring the use of its technology for other gastrointestinal applications in both humans and animals.
DNA mutations can demonstrate hereditary risk or predict the likelihood of developing a specific disease, but they cannot provide phenotypic or quantitative information related to the symptoms of disease or the body’s molecular response. This information is necessary for clinical decision-making and better health outcomes. RNA provides a real-time snapshot of what is occurring in the body, allowing for accurate interpretation of DNA variants and a better assessment of the patient’s current health status.
Human cells are constantly being shed from the gastrointestinal lining and passed in the stool. For common gastrointestinal diseases (colorectal cancer, GI lymphoma, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease), these cells have the unique capability to provide early warnings signs and critical information about the condition long before the release of molecular signals into the bloodstream or other parts of the body.
Isolation of seRNA is extremely difficult due to extensive bacterial noise and heavy signal degradation. Bacterial cells outnumber host cells at a ratio of 100:1, making isolation of the eukaryotic signals challenging. Further, the single-stranded nature of RNA makes it less stable and hard to preserve. These characteristics limit the effectiveness of high throughput sequencing and targeted pull-down for downstream applications. Geneoscopy's extraction method eliminates bacterial noise, enriches for host signals, and effectively preserves intact RNA.
Compared with DNA biomarkers, RNA biomarkers have the advantage of providing dynamic insights into cellular states and regulatory processes.
RNA has multiple copies in a cell, which delivers more information than DNA.
– MDPI Review
Diagnostics are critical for the prevention, diagnosis, management, and treatment of disease. However, diagnostic capabilities are often limited by cost, accuracy, or invasiveness. Geneoscopy is committed to developing diagnostic tests that are inexpensive, accurate, and noninvasive by leveraging the power of seRNA.
Digestive diseases affect 70 million Americans each year, resulting in over 240,000 deaths and $140 billion in medical costs. Digestive diseases include a diverse spectrum of conditions, including colorectal cancer, liver disease, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, celiac disease and irritable bowel syndrome.
Like humans, our furry friends also suffer from a wide variety of gastrointestinal diseases, including bacterial and viral infections, inflammatory bowel disease, and cancer. Pets cannot communicate as well as their human counterparts, making accurate diagnostic tools all the more important.
At least 60-70 million Americans are affected each year by digestive diseases at a cost that exceeds $100 billion in direct medical expenses.
In 2009, 245,921 deaths were attributable to an underlying gastrointestinal cause.
Andrew brings knowledge of and experience with financial planning, human capital management, company strategy, and business development to Geneoscopy. He previously worked as an associate at Lindsay Goldberg, a middle-market private equity firm focused on providing long-term growth capital to family-owned businesses. He began his career as a financial analyst in J.P. Morgan’s healthcare investment banking group, working primarily on M&A and capital markets transactions in the biotech, medical devices, and life science tools sectors. He received his B.S. in Applied Economics & Management from Cornell University and an M.B.A. from The Wharton School, with majors in Health Care Management and Entrepreneurial Management.
As Chief Science Officer, Erica leads clinical strategy and research and development. Prior to founding Geneoscopy in 2015, she worked at the Washington University School of Medicine to develop a noninvasive diagnostic test to evaluate children in Africa with Environmental Enteropathy Disease. She started her career as a research technician at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, where she was engineering staple food crops in Africa to be more nutritious. Erica graduated from Cornell University with a dual B.S. in Biological Sciences and Applied Economics & Management. Currently, she is in her fifth year of the M.D./Ph.D. program at the Washington University School of Medicine, where her Ph.D. concentration is in Genetics and Genomics.
In his role as Chief Technology Officer, Yiming leads and manages all of the technology underlying Geneoscopy’s diagnostic testing platforms. His current academic focus is in genome science with particular interests in data mining and genome analysis. Yiming’s research has mainly been concentrated on machine learning approaches to tackle genomic network topics at the Center for Genome Sciences and Systems Biology. A biomedical engineer by training, he has previously developed analysis tools to automatically extract features from medical imaging data. Yiming graduated from the University of Utah with a B.S. in Bioengineering, and he received his Master’s in Biomedical Engineering from Cornell University. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Computer Science at Washington University in St. Louis.
Since joining the Geneoscopy team in 2017 as Principal Investigator, Elizabeth has operated Geneoscopy’s lab and conducted bench research for all clinical trials. Prior to Geneoscopy, her work included the creation of a viral RNA detection system using Duplex Specific Nuclease and a microbial source tracking method based on field work on Lord Howe Island in Australia. Her graduate work focused on the creation and characterization of the fusion protein StrepMiniSOG and its application to solar based disinfection methods. Elizabeth received her Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from the University of Cincinnati, and she graduated from Saint Louis University with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering and a minor in Engineering Mathematics.
Katie joined Geneoscopy in 2018 to further advance and develop bioinformatics, with a specific focus on building a diagnostic sequencing pipeline for seRNA. She completed her Ph.D. in Molecular Cell Biology from Washington University in St. Louis. Her research had focused on using next generation sequencing and bioinformatics analyses to characterize both the genomic and immunogenomic landscape of tumors and how this changes with respect to treatment. As an undergraduate, she conducted research on gene regulation in Drosophila. Katie graduated from the Schreyer Honors College at Penn State University with a B.S. in Biochemistry.
Kimberly joined Geneoscopy in August of 2018 as a researcher. Before that she was employed in the Genetics Department at Washington University School of Medicine where the lab focus was understanding the mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disease, specifically the role of Schwann cell metabolism in affecting axonal integrity. Her graduate studies at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Medicine comprised characterization of distinct macrophage populations in the intestines of horses diagnosed with acute and chronic equine dysautonomia. As an undergraduate research assistant, she studied the effectiveness of various methods for the extraction and isolation of high-amylose starch from maize varieties. Kimberly received her MSc degree in Animal Biosciences from the University of Edinburgh and graduated from Truman State University with a B.S. in Agriculture with specialization in Animal Science and a Minor in Equine Studies.
All disease begins in the gut.
– Hippocrates, ∼400 BC
Digestive health is about having guts. Some don’t have the stomach for it.
– Geneoscopy Team, 2017 AD