Copenhagen, Denmark, 25th January 2023 – VenomAid Diagnostics, a company dedicated to developing rapid diagnostic tests for snakebite envenoming, announced today that it has successfully raised $1 million in funding from a select group of private Business Angels and the philanthropic venture fund Good Ventures LLC.
Founded in 2018 with a mission of reducing the global burden of snakebite, VenomAid Diagnostics (Abbr.: VenomAid) has developed an affordable, easy-to-use, in vitro diagnostic for management of snakebite. The simple, portable device uses a small amount of blood from the patient to quickly identify the type of venom in the patient's bloodstream.This enables healthcare workers to quickly and accurately diagnose the type of snakebite and administer the appropriate treatment, increasing the chances of survival and reducing the risk of permanent disability.
The World Health Organisation estimates that there are approximately 5.4 million snakebites each year, with up to 2.7 million resulting in severe envenoming. One of the main challenges in treating snakebites is the difficulty in identifying the type of snake that bit the victim. This is important because different types of snakes have different venom, and the appropriate treatment varies depending on the type of venom. Despite this global health burden, there are currently no widely available rapid diagnostic tests for snakebite envenoming. VenomAid aims to fill this critical need by providing rapid and accurate diagnostic tests that empowers more clinical personnel to correctly diagnose snakebites.
VenomAid’s lead asset, the Bothrops kit, has shown ability to detect several snake venoms from the Bothrops genus, despite variance in venom composition. The test can be used in even resource-limited settings, enabling a larger fraction of the healthcare system to offer treatment for snakebites. Currently, snakes from the Bothrops genus account for 70-80% of snakebites in South America, resulting death and disabilities among those inflicted, leading to even larger socio economical consequences for local societies.
Jonas Arnold Jürgensen, CEO of VenomAid said: “This financing is a vital step in addressing one of the world's most neglected tropical diseases. Current diagnostic tools for snakebites are often expensive and difficult to use in remote areas, which means that many snakebite victims do not receive the appropriate treatment in time. If successful, VenomAid’s technology has the potential to transform snakebite management by reducing time from bite to treatment, and thus save lives, prevent disabilities, and drive economic growth in some of the world's poorest and most marginalised communities. We are happy to see the VenomAid family and supporters growing and are looking forward to ‘fight the bite’ with our new investors."
The new investment will allow VenomAid to further develop its technology platform and bring the company's lead asset to market, ultimately transforming snakebite management with the power of affordable and simple diagnostics.
Chris Somerville of Open Philanthropy, which recommended the investment to Good Ventures LLC, said: "We supported an investment in VenomAid because it is on track to develop and deploy a series of products that will greatly facilitate rapid diagnosis and treatment of snakebites, resulting in significant reductions in mortality and disability around the world."
For more information please contact:
VenomAid Diagnostics ApS
Jonas Arnold Jürgensen, CEO & Co-founder
+45 30 48 27 47
About VenomAid Diagnostics
VenomAid Diagnostics (abbr. VenomAid) is a Nordic medtech startup innovating toxin-diagnostics, mainly within animal envenomations. VenomAid has recently established state-of-the-art facilities in Denmark and built know-how within Lateral Flow Assay development. VenomAid’s current flagship project is the Bothrops kit – a diagnostic device for the Brazilian and Latin American market that can detect envenomings from Lancehead snakes and thereby guide selection of antivenom.
About Good Ventures LLC
Good Ventures LLC invests in for-profits related to human health and well-being, and donates its net earnings to the Good Ventures Foundation.