September 24, 2004
Seahawk Biosystems Corporation, currently developing a multi-use biosensor, announced today that it has received a strategic technology development and investment contract from In-Q-Tel, a private venture group funded by the Central Intelligence Agency.
Seahawk’s new biosensor is based on magnetic biochip technology developed and patented by the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) in Washington, D.C. In addition to sales to the national security market, Seahawk plans to introduce the biosensor to the companion animal diagnostics market. The biosensor will allow veterinarians the unprecedented ability to assess a pet’s need for revaccination as well as detect multiple diseases right in their own clinic, in real time, reducing the time and expense for veterinary care. This technology addresses an estimated market of approximately $2.1B in the US, and $3.5B worldwide. Under the license with NRL Seahawk can extend its revolutionary technology to other diagnostics markets such as equine and livestock, food processing, and environmental testing.
“Seahawk is a great example of a company leveraging dual-use technology,” said Gilman Louie, CEO of In-Q-Tel. “With the introduction of Seahawk’s sensor to the commercial market, defense and intelligence customers will be able to buy this sensor off the shelf as well.”
Seahawk’s biosensor supports both antibody and DNA/RNA tests, making it more versatile than other biosensors currently available. The biosensor is more compact, portable and affordable than competing systems that are based on optical detection. In most cases, the costly and time consuming steps of amplification and enrichment are significantly minimized, and are often totally eliminated.
As the company prepares to raise its Series A round of financing in fall 2004, Curt Bilby of Seahawk is excited about the partnership with In-Q-Tel. “Seahawk is pleased to be working with In-Q-Tel. We have already achieved our first milestone for In-Q-Tel, and are applying this second phase of funding to the commercialization of the technology.”
Seahawk Biosystems Corporation is a private company commercializing patented, innovative biosensor technology from the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C. Located in Austin, Texas, Seahawk is committed to provide a robust product line of rapid, cost-effective and accurate biological tests for veterinary diagnostics as well as other applications. www.seahawkbio.com