A team of students from St. Petersburg State University (SPbU) reached the finals of the Startup Rally 2020 competition and on September 17-18 will present a technology that can significantly help in the treatment of cancer in Gelendzhik, Russia. The Light Up Team included students from St. Petersburg State University in the fields of Chemistry and Biology and the Master in Management program of GSOM SPbU.
The students suggested using nanoparticles of gold and silver in the bloodstream of patients to highlight cancerous tumors and thus make them more visible to doctors. Fluorescence molecular tomography is a modern medical imaging method that allows you to monitor what is happening in the tissues of a living organism without removing them.
The technology proposed by the Light-Up Tteam amplifies the signal of a fluorophore — a fragment of a molecule that gives it fluorescent properties ten times. This will help find small neoplasms and tumors deep in the tissues. Strengthening the signal will reduce the number of tags used for a single diagnosis, reduce the cost of the procedure, and therefore increase its availability. The team intends to offer its development to private and public diagnostic laboratories.
“For effective work, we have assigned roles in the team. Everyone is responsible for their own area, which allows us to achieve results faster and use our competencies competently. My role in the project was preparing presentations for speeches, communicating with partners, drawing up a business plan, as well as managing financial accounting and project promotion,” said Ekaterina Baranova, Master in Management program at GSOM SPbU.
In total, 133 applications were submitted for the Startup Rally 2020, 108 were selected. Competition projects were distributed in three areas: “innovative medicines”, “medical devices” (diagnostics, treatment, rehabilitation) and “digital medicine”. The project of the Light-Up Team is presented in the category of Medical Devices.
In June 2020, the team entered the finals of the Start-up SPbU 2020 competition and received a grant from SPbU for 1,000,000 rubles, as well as a prize of 200,000 rubles.