Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics

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Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND)
Formation2003 (2003)
HeadquartersGeneva
Location
FieldsGlobal health, Diagnostics
CEO
Bill Rodriguez
Websitefinddx.org

The Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) is a global health non-profit based in Geneva, Switzerland. FIND functions as a product development partnership, engaging in active collaboration with over 150 partners to facilitate the development, evaluation, and implementation of diagnostic tests for poverty-related diseases. The organisation's Geneva headquarters are in Campus Biotech. Country offices are located in New Delhi, India; Cape Town, South Africa; and Hanoi, Viet Nam.

History[edit]

FIND was launched at the 56th World Health Assembly in 2003 in response to the critical need for innovative and affordable diagnostic tests for diseases in low- and middle-income countries.[1]

The initiative was launched by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and WHO's Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), and its initial focus was to speed up the development and evaluation of tuberculosis tests.[2]

In 2011, FIND was recognized as an "Other International Organization" by the Swiss Government, alongside DNDi and Medicines for Malaria Venture.[3]

Priorities[edit]

The organization focuses on improving diagnosis in several disease areas, including hepatitis C, HIV, malaria, neglected tropical diseases (sleeping sickness, Chagas disease, leishmaniasis, buruli ulcer), and tuberculosis. Alongside this, FIND works on diagnostic connectivity, antimicrobial resistance, acute febrile illness,[4] and outbreak preparedness.[5]

To support this work, FIND engages in development of target product profiles, maintains clinical trial platforms, manages specimen banks, negotiates preferential product pricing for developing markets,[6] and creates and implements trainings and lab strengthening tools.[7]

In 2020, FIND became a co-convener of the Diagnostics Pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator with The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Together they supported the development of reliable rapid antigen tests for COVID-19, and guaranteed access to 120 million rapid tests at an affordable price to low- and middle-income countries.[8]

FIND also aims at improving the diagnostics ecosystem by working on activities such as sequencing, managing a biobank network to facilitate diagnostic development across diseases, helping countries optimize their networks of diagnostic services,[9] and developing digital tools, such as algorithms, that can help healthcare workers provide better diagnosis.

Recent achievements[edit]

From 2015 to 2020, fifteen new diagnostic technologies supported by FIND received regulatory clearance, and 10 of them were in use by the end of 2020 in low- and middle-income countries.[10]

One example of such tests is Abbott's BIOLINE HAT 2.0, a rapid test for African trypanosomiasis, a disease also known as sleeping sickness. In 2021 Abbott donated 450,000 of these tests to scale up testing in low- and middle-income countries.[11]

Over the same period, FIND supported the development of four multi-disease diagnostic platforms:

  • Cepheid's GeneXpert MTB/RIF for simultaneous rapid tuberculosis diagnosis and rapid antibiotic sensitivity test
  • Eiken's LAMP platform for the detection of diseases including tuberculosis, malaria, sleeping sickness and leishmaniasis[12]
  • Molbio's Truenat, a point-of-care rapid molecular test for diagnosis of infectious diseases
  • DCN's Fluoro rapid test for gonorrhoea[13]

In April 2020, the World Health Organization launched the ACT-Accelerator partnership, a global collaboration to accelerate the development, production and equitable distribution of vaccines, diagnostics and therapeutics for COVID-19.[14] Leading the diagnostic pillar together with The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, FIND has worked to enable access to tests by boosting research and development, Emergency Use Listing, independent assessment, and manufacturing of tests.[citation needed]

Together with partners FIND has developed and made available online courses and training packages[15] for healthcare workers on COVID-19 testing.

FIND has also created a portal to provide an overview of the COVID-19 testing landscape, including a directory of COVID-19 diagnostics commercialized.,[16] and a tracker centralizing all the data reported by the countries on COVID-19 tests performed, incidence, deaths and positivity rate.[17]

Funding and leadership[edit]

FIND receives its funding from more than thirty donors, including bilateral and multilateral organizations as well as private foundations.

Members of the Board of Directors include Ilona Kickbusch, George F. Gao, David L. Heymann, Shobana Kamineni and Sheila Tlou.[18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "UN, Gates Foundation launch $30 million research effort for deadly diseases". news.un.org. Retrieved 2021-06-03.
  2. ^ "$30 Million Research Effort to Develop New Tests for Deadly Infectious Diseases". www.gatesfoundation.org. Retrieved 2021-06-15.
  3. ^ "International status granted to three not-for-profit organizations in Switzerland – DNDi". www.dndi.org. 8 December 2010. Retrieved 2017-02-27.
  4. ^ "FIND Expands Fever Bank for Diagnostics Developers". www.360dx.com. Retrieved 2021-03-11.
  5. ^ Usher, Ann Danaiya (2022). "FIND documents dramatic reduction in COVID-19 testing". The Lancet Infectious Diseases. 22 (7): 949. doi:10.1016/S1473-3099(22)00376-0. PMC 9162475. PMID 35659000. S2CID 249281667.
  6. ^ Fleming, Kenneth A.; et al. (2021). "The Lancet Commission on diagnostics: transforming access to diagnostics". The Lancet. 398 (10315): 1997–2050. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(21)00673-5. PMC 8494468. PMID 34626542. S2CID 238412855.
  7. ^ "FIND, the global alliance for diagnostics". www.futurelearn.com. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  8. ^ "How the ACT Accelerator is making a difference: Impact and Results". www.who.int. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  9. ^ "FIND Receives $3.9M Grant to Optimize Dx Networks in LMICs". www.360dx.com/. 16 November 2021. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  10. ^ "Changing Lives Through Testing" (PDF). www.finddx.org. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  11. ^ "Dundee research to help eliminate Sleeping Sickness". www.lifesci.dundee.ac.uk. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  12. ^ "The use of a commercial loop-mediated isothermal amplification assay (TB-LAMP) for the detection of tuberculosis" (PDF). www.apps.who.int. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  13. ^ "FIND initiates feasibility studies for rapid, low-cost diagnostics to distinguish gonorrhoea from chlamydia in primary care settings". www.finddx.org. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  14. ^ "What is the ACT-Accelerator". www.who.int. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  15. ^ "SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Diagnostic Test training package". www.who.int. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  16. ^ "Test directory". www.finddx.org. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  17. ^ "SARS-CoV-2 Test Tracker". www.finddx.org. Retrieved 2022-06-24.
  18. ^ "Board of Directors". www.finddx.org. Retrieved 2022-06-04.