Short film: The Longitude Prize in the USA

07 Sep 2016
Written by
Nina Cromeyer Dieke

The U.S. is an important country for the Longitude Prize given its leadership and skill in healthcare research. There's also a lot at stake: Each year in the U.S., at least 2 million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics, and at least 23,000 people die as a direct result of these infections.

Earlier this year we spent two weeks travelling from East to West to introduce the Prize to new innovators and to speak with existing partners. We had meetings in Washington DC and San Francisco, and held events in Boston, Houston, San Diego and Seattle.

When the trip started we had 21 U.S. teams registered to compete. To date, out of our 203 registered teams, 32 are from the U.S. They represent academia, pharma, crowdsourcing enterprises, entrepreneurs, diagnostics companies and more.

Out of these 32 teams, 8 applied for our Discovery Awards seed funding this summer, and 6 have applied to win the Prize:

Designed2Win
NVS Technologies
Point of Care Diagnostics
Spectral Platforms
Team CMI
Walter May

Our events and meetings across cities presented a fantastic opportunity to meet with bright minds already working on diagnostics and AMR, as well as some new players with ideas from different fields. We had a great time and wanted to capture our experience. This short film shows just some of the highlights of our trip. 

Here's what some of our U.S. teams have to say about being part of the Prize:

“The Longitude Prize is a source of non-dilutive funding, free of budgetary constraints normally associated with federal funding sources.  Importantly, the Prize has raised awareness that antibiotic resistance is a crisis that belongs to each global citizen.  This is a remarkable service to young companies like ours that are developing solutions, but cannot invest substantial resources in educating investors. The market has been  clearly defined by the Prize."
Dr. Evgeni Sokurenko, Chairperson and Founder, ID Genomics Inc. 

"The Longitude Prize reflects a broad, global push tackle antibiotic resistance. The exciting difference here is the realization that an underlying factor is mis-prescription of antibiotics. That's a root cause to be tackled with better diagnostics. The Prize is a global aspiration that strongly focuses on providing a solution for 99% of humanity, not just 1% as sometimes is the case. We've transferred our experiences from bacterial food pathogen testing to clinically relevant species and matrices. Next up is pressure testing the chemistry, before designing a prototype for alpha testing and voice-of-customer work."
Michael Koeris, Founder, Sample6 

Thank you to our hosts and organisers:

UK Science & Innovation Network
British Foreign Commonwealth Offices in all cities
Johnson & Johnson Innovation Labs (JLABS)
Seattle Children's Hospital

Thank you to our distinguished speakers:

Boston

Prof Kevin Outterson, Boston University
Prof Rifat Atun, Harvard University
Rebecca Leshan, British Foreign Commonwealth Office

Houston

Karen Bell, British Foreign Commonwealth Office
Michael Graziano, director of Resistance
Prof Timothy Palzkill, Baylor College of Medicine

San Diego

Bernadette Green, British Foreign Commonwealth Office
Dr Kara Bortone, J-LABS
Dr George Sakoulas, University of California San Diego

Seattle

Dr David Bell, Global Good
Prof Douglas Call, Washington State University
Lisa Cohen, Washington Global Health Alliance
Naveen Jain, Entrepreneur
Prof Craig Rubens, Seattle Children's Hospital
Prof Matthew Thompson, University of Washington
Prof Scott Weissman, University of Washington