Student entrepreneur takes blood tests from the waiting room to the living room

May 9, 2019

For cancer patients, undergoing regular testing to monitor their complete blood count (CBC) is a necessary part of treatment. But the commute to and from the clinic, especially for patients who live in rural areas, combined with the additional risk of traveling while immunocompromised and the long wait to receive results, can make an already stressful and taxing process even more exhausting.

Penn State biology student Sherveen Karbasi witnessed firsthand the toll these frequent trips for blood work took on his already-exhausted grandfather while he underwent treatment for lung cancer. Motivated by this experience, Karbasi set out to mobilize the CBC process, making it simpler, safer, and more convenient for cancer patients.

Karbasi knew that, if he could, he wanted to help prevent anyone from going through what his grandfather went through. And with his lifelong interest in science and biology, he also knew that Penn State had the world-class academics and cutting-edge research to help him accomplish his goals.

With support from Penn State, Karbasi has spearheaded the development of HemoGO, a smartphone app that uses a diabetes lancer and special phone attachment to deliver a complete CBC in minutes. The patient simply equips the phone attachment over their smartphone’s camera, uses the pain-free lancer to extract a drop of blood, then places the droplet onto the test strip built into the phone attachment, and HemoGO takes care of the rest.

Using proprietary technology, the app uses the smartphone’s camera to read and analyze the results, which are then delivered to both the patient and their doctor in less than a minute. Being able to regularly complete their CBCs at home will let patients and their physicians track any changes in their blood over time, while making the blood testing quicker, easier, and more convenient for both the patient and the doctor.

Penn State has the full article