RI-MUHC ANNUAL REPORT 2022
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITIES
The COVID-19 pandemic has focused attention on public health and hospital practices. These practices are important not only for the management of COVID-19, but also for minimizing the impact of other harmful infectious agents, such as Clostridioides difficile (C. difficile), commonly referred to as C-diff. C-diff bacterial infection (CDI) is common in hospitals and long-term facilities around the globe. If untreated, CDI can be life threatening. Annual healthcare costs associated with its treatment reach an estimated $272M in the U.S. alone, and this excludes the significant impact on the patient’s quality of life.
One of the key challenges in managing CDI in hospital patients is predicting the progression of the disease in order to administer appropriate treatment. Dr. Donald Vinh, a leading scientist in the Infectious Diseases and Immunity in Global Health Program at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health (RI- MUHC), and his colleagues have tackled this challenge and succeeded in identifying a number of predictive biomarkers for C-diff, which are indicative of the severity of the infection and its progression. Such an approach is very efficient as it allows for the accurate diagnosis and prognosis of CDI. Upon receiving this information, a physician can make a rapid decision regarding the personalized medical treatment for a patient, thereby improving the quality of care and reducing the complications associated with CDI.
In collaboration with the Business Development Office of the RI-MUHC, Dr. Vinh has proceeded with filing for a patent for this invention. The Business Development Office and Dr. Vinh will next commercialize the C-diff predictive biomarker kit in North America. Bringing this kit into clinical practice has the potential of becoming a game changer in the hospital management of C-diff and in reducing the economic burden on the healthcare system.
Learn more: Fecal host biomarkers predicting severity of Clostridioides difficile infection (JCI Insight)