Ahead Research, a life sciences startup founded by two
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
students, is launching its second product, Medassure, this year.
Craig Monsen and David Do launched the health information company in Fells Point in 2012 along with its first product, Symcat.
Symcat allows users access to medical information and to assess the state of their health. Available on the web or as an application on a mobile device, the program asks users to enter their medical symptoms, then provides information from the federal Centers for Disease Control's database on the most likely diagnosis. Symcat is available as a free download on any smart phone, both iPhones and Android devices.
Medassure takes Symcat a step futher by providing information on medications to take for the diagnosis and analyzing possible interactions with the users' other medications. The founders say they plan to merge the two products together and market under the single name of Symcat.
Tolu Babalola, the company's head of growth, says Ahead Research launched Symcat with little fanfare but plans to market it aggressively this year. “We did some marketing and advertising of Symcat but this year we are spending money on a marketing campaign,” he says.
Monsen and Do, now in their final year at Johns Hopkins medical school, developed Ahead Research in a health technology incubator, Blueprint Health. The company's funding comes from a $30,000 award from the Cigna Health Innovation Challenge and a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant for $100,000.
In December, Ahead Research signed a memorandum of understanding with nonprofit BioHealth Innovation
to accelerate the commercialization of Symcat. With offices in Rockville and Baltimore, BioHealth may launch a healthcare accelerator
Ahead Research has a full-time staff of three. The company expects to hire an undetermined number of software engineers in the next 12 to 18 months. It is also starting an internship program for college undergraduates in the local area.
Source: Tolu Babalola, Ahead Research
Writer: Barbara Pash