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Mindera Health (minderadx.com) is commercializing scalable non-invasive biomarker extraction technology and data analytics to profile over 7,000 biomarkers per sample collected through a patented non-invasive dermal biomarker patch. Their flagship test, Mind.PX, provides a treatment algorithm to prospectively predict a patient’s response to expensive psoriasis biologic drugs.

Wendy Lewis spoke with Nashville dermatologist Michael Gold, MD about Mindera Health platform that boasts an expansive repository of skin data called the SkinAtlas.

What does Mindera offer practicing dermatologists?

Michael Gold, MD: There is no other technology like this in the market. Using mRNA, the same technology that is used for vaccines, this offers a way to take something from skin, analyze it, and determine whether a specific drug or compound will have an effect or not.

If Mindera can do this, we will be able to know what a patient will respond to in advance. The potential benefits are universal. For example, it will save time and money, especially for insurance companies. We will know in advance what doesn’t work, so we can rule it out without wasting time and money. We would be able to inform the patient’s insurance company that we performed the Mind.PX test and we know that this patient will respond to a specific drug or treatment method. This should make it easier and more efficient to get pre-approval.

For what skin diseases and conditions do you anticipate the greatest benefit?

Dr. Gold: Psoriasis is Mindera’s entry point; they are planning to move into other categories. For example, there may be an application for making diagnoses, identifying skin cancers and other inflammatory skin diseases, including atopic dermatitis.

Any patient we can include into our clinical research program who is suffering with psoriasis and is interested in this test, we can know based on their response clinically if a specific treatment or drug will work.

At this time, a multi-center trial is ongoing. If this works the way we think it will work, it can change everything about pre-authorization by taking the guesswork out of it for the dermatologist and physician extenders. We will still need to get pre-authorization to administer the drug, but we will be able to tell the insurance company that we have done this innovative, first-of-its-kind testing, so we already know that it will be effective. Armed with that information, the insurers will be all-in, because the economics make sense to them and this model will truly benefit them. Of course, it also benefits dermatologists as well as their patients in many ways. We have never had this kind of diagnostic tool before.

The science behind this innovation is sound. It has real potential to be a game-changer. It changes everything about how we practice medical dermatology. When you consider the rapid pace at which new data gets acquired, the Mindera platform allows for a dramatic improvement in how patients can be diagnosed and treated.

Where do you anticipate the biggest advantages?

Dr. Gold: I see this platform fitting seamlessly in private practice, as well as group practices, and venture-backed dermatology roll-ups. But that is just the beginning. It will work equally well in hospital environments, large institutions doing clinical trials, as well as research centers. It could even play a role in aesthetic dermatology in the future.

Kits will be available directly to patients. In the practice, an extender can do a test of the forearm using a tape strip.

The fact that we don’t have to wait and guess is a huge time saver for the doctor and the patient. Now, by the time we give a patient a drug, we won’t know if it will work as we hope it will. Mindera eliminates trial and error.

There is no doubt that insurance companies will jump on this in a heartbeat. They are already waiting to see if this will work.

When will Mindera be available?

Dr. Gold: The technology will be directly available to patients. The plan right now is to have Mind.PX rolled out by the end of this year. Watch this space!

Editor's note:This article initially compared the Mindera technology to that from DermTech. The two technologies are distinct. DermTech's PLA uses RT-PCR (reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction) to measure the gene expression of two genes, LINC00518 (long- intergenic non-coding RNA 00518) and PRAME (preferentially expressed antigen in melanoma) and identify the malignant changes of melanoma on the genomic level.

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