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Core Diagnostics: Transformation of Diagnostics to the Core

Zoya Brar,Founder & CEO

Zoya Brar

Founder & CEO

From predicting treatment outcomes, to making patient care more effective, data science healthcare has proven to be an invaluable contribution to the future of the industry. One of the key reasons for the rapid growth is the existence of vast amounts of healthcare data in the form of patient clinical data, including lab results and data from diagnoses, as well as from R&D in the from published papers and clinical trials. Zoya Brar, Founder & CEO of CORE Diagnostics quotes, “As we say ‘data is the new oil’, undoubtedly, the healthcare sector witnesses vast amount of healthcare data being collected and analysed on a regular basis”. Based out of Gurgaon, CORE Diagnostics is a Clinical laboratory focused on Next Generation Diagnostics for disease stratification and therapy selection.

CORE has India’s largest repository in diagnostic samples – tissue samples and pathology images, correlated with clinical history and diagnostic findings. The company is in the clinical data science business, with the largest centre of excellence in high-end diagnostics built in. Not just one of the largest, CORE was the first laboratory in India to use Digital Pathology. Moreover, this firm built a bespoke Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS), to make digital pathology easy to use. As PACS and RIS systems changed the face of Radiology, pathology too got its own makeover; thanks to CORE. The company has been of great help to partner hospital systems across the country, for having streamlined pathology workflow – and improving efficiency and accuracy of diagnostics.

CORE is focused on bringing the most advanced testing technical know-how to India. CORE stands for Cardiology, Oncology, Reproductive and Endocrine Diagnostics; though the company is also active in other disciplines, such as nephrology, urology, and neurology, etc.

The Power of High End Diagnostics
CORE’s in-house Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) manages the patient and sample data right from when the sample first enters the laboratory, through each step that the sample goes through until the report is delivered to the patient and the prescribing clinician. The entire system, end-to-end, is HIPAA compliant and protects patient’s information. CORE conducts cutting edge clinical research where their data repositories and analytics knowhow are leveraged to develop new tests,and continuously improve the efficacy while reducing the cost of existing tests.

CORE Diagnostics’ initiative COREssence helps clinicians stay up to date with the latest scientific

advancements. The CORE team also runs a Case of the Month series where CORE shares an interesting and unique case every month to help educate clinicians across the country.

Three Pillars to High-end Services
Three significant questions led CORE Diagnostics to build the largest high-end clinical laboratory. The questions were: what you have, what you know and who you know.

"Core has India’s largest Repository in Diagnostic samples – Tissue Samples and Pathology Images, Correlated with Clinical History and Diagnostic Findings"

Capital is the answer to ‘what you have.’ Since its inception, CORE has ensured that the company is well funded so that capital never becomes the rate limiting factor for innovation. “We have invested heavily in innovation and in cutting-edge technology,” adds Zoya.

'What you know’ refers to the talent and skill of CORE’s workforce. CORE is driven by some of the finest professionals in diagnostics – from India and from the States–and has created a culture of transparency and performance around the professionals. This motivates the experts further to build their own teams, often comprising of fresh recruits from universities, with the same value framework.

Thirdly, 'who you know' refers to CORE's network, starting with Silicon Valley, Boston, London and Mumbai based investors, along with the most diverse set of strategic alliances across the world.

Identifying the Most Complex of Cases
With their embedded high-end diagnostics and clinical research, CORE is well poised to take a strong foothold in the Indian market. CORE Diagnostics is able to deploy eclinical trial, skills and management bandwidth under a single platform. For a market like India, research and innovation in all three areas are critical as Zoya informs. CORE has three extremely active R&D groups in the US and in India to accomplish the same. Further, CORE is enhancing the learning experience at medical educational institutions by sharing its infrastructure, technical know-how, and is on a path to becoming the world’s largest digital library of pathology cases. More so, CORE has been using digital pathology for remote reading routinely for the past 36 months. The company has partnered with few of the best scientific and clinical minds globally to support diagnosis of the most complex case, as well as to advance the state of clinical science.

In a recent turn of events, a Delhi based 18 year old visited her doctor reporting 5 months of recurrent hiccups, weight loss, abnormal lymph nodes and abdominal distention. Her doctor suspected her as having macrocytic anemia with marked thrombocytopenia. A biopsy was done at another lab in the country and she was diagnosed with leukemia. However, unsure of the contradicting results, she approached CORE for a second opinion. A test called Gamma/Delta was performed and she was diagnosed with Hepatosplenic lymphoma; a rare, extremely aggressive form of Lymphoma which affects young adults. Because the young girl was diagnosed

correctly by CORE, she could receive early and prompt diagnosis. The girl was able to undergo a stem cell transplant that eventually saved her.

Valuable Partnerships
Presently, CORE is looking down the barrel of advanced diagnostics space in 25 additional countries, and 100 additional tier 2 & 3 Indian cities. Besides the expansion goals, CORE is toiling to advance technologically through introducing innovation in all aspects of service delivery. This includes product portfolio, sales model, service delivery, best-in-class diagnostic accuracy and quality. “We want to introduce innovation to address the underlying complexities of high end diagnostics and that requires extensive collaboration with academia and big pharma,” explains the CEO.

CORE is backed by Silicon Valley based Artiman Ventures, a private equity firm Eight Roads Ventures and F-Prime Capital Partners. The company raised a total of USD 16M in two rounds - USD 5M off Series A in 2012 and USD 11M off Series B in 2016.

Pharma industry players who have joined hands with CORE include Astra Zenenca, Merck, NATCO, and Pfizer, etc. Moreover, several dozen global innovators in Diagnostics, including Guardant, Paradigm, and CellWorks have partnered with CORE in India to introduce new innovations here. CORE has the broadest portfolio of over 1500 tests, and is present in over 100 cities in India. They work closely with almost all the leading hospitals such as Max, Artemis, Apollo, Columbia Asia, Medanta & over 3000 others. Having achieved so much recognition over the past years, CORE Diagnostics is looking at the horizon, changing the way Indian diagnostics work. With that notion the company moves only further, because sky is the limit.

CORE at a Glance
CORE specialization: Molecular Diagnostics, Flow Cytometry, Immuno histo chemistry, Histopathology, Cytogenetics and Cytopathology.

CORE Services: ammaCŌRE, pulmoCŌRE, coloCŌRE, gastriCŌRE, hemaCŌRE, dualCŌRE, cerviCŌRE, uroCŌRE, neuroCŌRE, amnioCŌRE, and geneCŌRE.

Customized Report: CORE tailors the test report template to achieve a layout and level of detail that is optimum for the patient. This enables clinicians and patients to engage in a collaborative dialogue to determine the most effective course of intervention.

Unique Tests: CORE focuses on bringing the richest menu of over 1500 specialized, high-end diagnostic tests with a rich network of collaborations and academic and diagnostic facilities all over the world.

Doorstep Service: CORE recognizes the value of convenience by coming to patient’s doorstep, both for collecting the sample as well as for delivering the report, providing an end-to-end solution.

Second Opinion: Understanding the need to be confident about the authenticity and reliability of any diagnosis before starting treatment, CORE consults least two specialists - from a global panel of pathologists – to analyze your test before sending the report.

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Core Diagnostics: Transformation of Diagnostics to the Core