Friends Sanjit Kumar and Santhosh Subramian are college students. They’re also biotech entrepreneurs. When Kumar learned that a tumor had been detected in his father’s brain, he was devastated. It wouldn’t be until 8 months of testing and analysis had passed before he and his family learned that the tumor was benign. At the time, his good friend Santhosh Subramian was completing an internship at the National Cancer Institute in Maryland and came across a research study that found a whopping 96 percent of lung cancer diagnoses made by radiologists turn out to be false positives.
This traumatic experience got them thinking. Kumar and Subramian wanted to create technology that could minimize the amount of time it takes from the initial detection of tumors to the official diagnosis. If they were successful they would reduce unnecessary stress and uncertainty for patients and their loved ones. This technology could also prevent unnecessary procedures.
What they came up with is a new software called DiaScan. It aims to reduce the interim period significantly by creating a database of diagnostic images of benign and malignant lung tumors. When a tumor is initially detected, it can be analyzed and compared with the database of similar cases.
Both Kumar and Subramian are still teenagers. Kumar is DiaScan’s CEO and attends Georgia Tech. Santhosh is CTO and a student at University of California, Berkeley. They are currently working on getting more funding for their biotech startup and have been intensifying their efforts this summer since both are off from school. Whatever the outcome, the success they already had shows that it’s never too early to innovate in the fascinating world of biotech.