We've come far in our treatment of infections—yet when an individual contracts a stubborn one, the path to the right medication remains slow. "Patients are still dependent on culture methods, and timing is critical for a serious infection," Howe says. To decrease that time lapse, improve outcomes and knock down costs, LuminaCare has devised a cloud-based predictive analytics platform that helps practitioners make better, faster decisions. According to Howe, the company's models help point doctors toward the right antibacterial treatment within 24 hours, a duration that has been shown to reduce hospital stays by at least 40%.
For now, LuminaCare's challenge is to bring together all the players—pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies as well as hospitals—to make its model work. But in the years and months ahead, it hopes to expand its therapeutic slate. "We're hoping to work with tuberculosis patients," Howe says. "We're considering ways we can work with pharmaceutical companies to create new antibiotic formulas." —Sarah Mahoney