Modern bioscience has little reach in the more remote corners of our globe. A Detroit startup called Life Magnetics is looking to change that — by applying its next-gen RNA extraction method to build a new wave of inexpensive, point-of-care diagnostics for viral diseases like HIV, hepatitis C and Zika.
The company has what amounts to a fancy tool to suck RNA out of cells. It’s a technique that’s already used in microfluidics, and in lab-on-a-chip technologies. But Life Magnetics is giving RNA extraction a bit of a makeover. I talked with CEO Kevin Hagedorn about the company, which is funded mostly through small grants from the National Science Foundation.