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Press Release

Avisa Selected as a Best University Startup for its Novel BreathTest™ Point-of-Care Diagnostic for Respiratory Infections

Avisa Pharma Inc.
Posted on: 21 Sep 16

Avisa Pharma Inc. participated this week in the inaugural University Startups Demo Day in Washington, DC, sponsored by the National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer (NCET2), an association of university startup officers. Avisa was one of only 35 companies selected as a “Best University Startups 2016” company by NCET2 and presented its technology to an audience of Global 1000/Fortune 500 companies, venture capitalists and angel investors looking for investment opportunities. The technology comes out of the University of New Mexico and the program is currently in clinical development at Avisa.

Avisa is a venture-backed healthcare company commercializing a rapid, point-of-care breath test for the diagnosis of pulmonary infections. The Avisa BreathTest™ enables antibiotic stewardship to combat the widespread overuse of antibiotics which has fueled the rise of antibiotic-resistant infections that is estimated to cost the US healthcare system over $20 billion each year1. The lead indication for Avisa’s BreathTest™ is the diagnosis of pneumonia in the emergency department, and a pilot study in that indication is expected to start soon. A second pilot clinical study is also planned for the diagnosis of ventilator-associated pneumonia. Promising results in early clinical studies have been seen in tuberculosis and cystic fibrosis.

“The overuse of antibiotics has led to multi-drug resistance as well as a major unnecessary cost burden to our healthcare system,” said David Joseph, Chief Executive Officer of Avisa. “To help fix this problem, there is an urgent need to quickly and accurately diagnose respiratory infections so patients can be properly treated. Avisa’s BreathTest™ has the potential to do just that as a point-of-care breath test that produces highly sensitive results in just ten minutes, enabling healthcare professionals to quickly determine the appropriate antibiotic to use. Current decision making is empirical due to the delay in getting lab results that could take up to 24 to 48 hours.”

Mr. Joseph this week also testified at a public hearing of the Presidential Advisory Council on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria and how BreathTest™ could potentially help to address this important issue.


Avisa is a clinical stage company that is developing a novel technology that rapidly detects a variety of respiratory pathogens within minutes after the patient inhales its proprietary drug substrate, AV-U13. BreathTest™ is a rapid 10-minute test that screens and detects respiratory infections including pneumonia, tuberculosis, and pulmonary diseases such as COPD and cystic fibrosis with the speed and sensitivity that can also facilitate the monitoring of antibiotic therapy. The AVISAR SPEC™ laser spectrometer, under development by Avisa, incorporates major design advancements that have resulted in a portable, laptop-size detection device that will have enormous utility in point-of-care settings—from rural health clinics in the developing world to modern medical clinics and hospitals. For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

1 C. Lee Ventola. The Antibiotic Resistance Crisis, Part 1: Causes and Threats. Pharmacy and Therapeutics. 2015 Apr; 40(4): 277–283.

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Business Wire

Last updated on: 21/09/2016

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