This story has been corrected from a previous version, which incorrectly stated that Ronald Kahn was a co-founder of RealTime Health. He is on the company's scientific advisory board.
BETHESDA, Md., Dec 4 – InforMax CEO Alex Titomirov said Tuesday he was launching a new start-up that would make gene expression-based preventive medicine technology available to individuals.
The new company, called RealTime Health, should be ready to release its first commercial products in 18-24 months, Titomirov told GenomeWeb following his presentation at the Fifth Annual Health Information Infrastructure Conference.
Initially the technology will be marketed to physicians for use with their patients, but later it will also be designed for wireless handheld devices, he said.
Titomirov described a scenario in which gene expression profiles relevant to conditions that an individual might be predisposed to would be monitored as they change over time. If the indicators approach the disease threshold, the individual could then be counseled as to appropriate interventions before symptoms ever appear.
The key, Titomirov said, would be to marshal the right tools and applications to build the gene expression profiles relevant to a wide range of conditions, developing norms and disease thresholds and understanding how these change over an individual's lifetime.
" Bioinformatics is the key enabler of preventive medicine," he said, noting that Informax would provide the information technologies for the new venture.
It was not clear where the financing would come from or whether RealTime Health would be set up as an InforMax subsidiary.
RealTime Health was co-founded by Titomirov. Ronald Kahn, director of the Elliott P. Joslin Research Laboratory in Boston, is on the company's scientific advisory board. Leroy Hood of the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle and Richard Mathis of the University of California at Berkeley are also involved in the company, Titomirov said.
Plans for the new company have been in the works for approximately a year and a half, Titomirov said.