Portland’s Hemex Health

Saving Lives Through Point-of-Care Diagnostics

Hemex Health is bringing affordable, accurate and, most of all, portable diagnostics to people who live in remote locations around the world. It’s the first step in connecting people to life-saving treatments.

They call it “Gazelle.”

Gazelle testing platformIt’s a fitting name, since Hemex Health’s portable testing platform shares several characteristics with the iconic African antelope. It’s highly sensitive, lightening fast, and able to roam at will.

Because of its gazelle-like attributes, this non-descript box (which looks like just another computer peripheral to most of us) is a proven leader in the field of diagnostics. Diseases like malaria and sickle cell disease are highly treatable, but treatment depends first and foremost on an efficient and accurate diagnosis. Unfortunately, state-of-the-art medical centers and their associated labs are usually located in urban areas. For people who live in remote settings in Africa and India, access to lab services — and therefore quick and accurate diagnostics — is literally beyond their reach. This is where Hemex Health’s Gazelle platform comes in.

Designed for the Field

Patti White, Hemex HealthAccording to Hemex Co-founder Patti White, “Gazelle is really a host. It can host specific tests for a number of diseases. We designed Gazelle to really be a platform that can go a lot of places and can survive a lot of challenging conditions.”

What sort of challenging conditions? Gazelle can run all day without power. It can survive heat up to 113 degrees. It can be shaken up and jostled around. And, perhaps most importantly, it’s affordable. These essential design features make it a game-changer in the growing field of point-of-care diagnostics — the first step in saving the lives of the 400,000 children who are diagnosed annually with sickle cell disease, as just one example.

Because of Business Oregon grants funded by the Oregon Lottery, Hemex Health has been able to continue developing this important diagnostics tool to help improve patient care, both here at home and around the world.

Peter G, Hemex Health
The funding from the Oregon Lottery is critical to our success. It’s allowed us to do some innovative things that we couldn’t afford to do on our own; it’s allowed us to grow the number of employees from two to over 25 here in Oregon.
— Peter Galen, Co-Founder Hemex Health

Applications for COVID-19

Hemex Health lab tech

What’s Next?

Because the Gazelle platform is designed to host tests for various diseases, Hemex Health is working to explore applications for COVID-19 testing using the platform. The same attributes that make it an ideal choice for point-of-care diagnostics in more remote parts of the world — its speed, durability, and affordability — could make Gazelle an ideal choice for rapid COVID-19 testing both here in the States or abroad, a great example of Portland-based technology having an impact across the globe.