The Zell Lurie Institute’s campus wide business plan competition, the Michigan Business Challenge (MBC), concludes on Friday, February 19. For the next six days, ZLI will highlight one of the student teams competing at the MBC Finals.
MBC Semi-Finalist Team
PreDxion – Caroline Landau (MBA ’16), Walker McHugh (MSE ’17)
What inspired your team name?
Since the overall goal of our company is to create diagnostics that are predictive of disease outcomes, the “Pre” of PreDxion is meant to capture prevention, while the “Dx” is medical shorthand for “diagnostics.” Taken together, PreDxion (pronounced “prediction”) illustrates the predictive nature of our diagnostics.
Tell us briefly about your business concept.
PreDxion fills a critical unmet need in acute care: currently physicians treating a certain kind of cancer immunotherapy are unable to monitor their patients’ immune response. This puts patients at increased risk for death. Our technology, MicroKine, solves this problem in thirty minutes from a single drop of blood.
How has the MBC experience helped transform your business strategy?
Prior to joining MBC, PreDxion did not have a framework or mechanism for pressure testing our assumptions for market entry. MBC has provided the structure and support for us to launch our venture and hopefully receive the financing necessary to bring our product to market.
What do you think will be the long-term impact of the implementation of this idea?
Long term, MicroKine’s success is the success of patients’ cancer immunotherapy. PreDxion believes that our technology will fundamentally change the way these patients are treated, allowing greater success in this nascent field and ever more discovery.
What has been your biggest takeaway?
We have learned that communication is key to delivering our product. Focusing our message and storyline has proven to be the most challenging, and rewarding, part of this process.
If you win, what will you do immediately following the competition?
If we win, we will thank the judges and head to the nearest watering hole to celebrate!
What are a few fun facts about your team?
If Walker is wearing scrubs, it means he hasn’t done laundry this week yet. If Caroline can’t book a room at Ross for team meetings, she panics.
Learn more about these great student startups by attending the Michigan Business Challenge Showcase and Finals on February 19. Route for your favorite team during the MBC final presentations at 3p.m., mingle with local entrepreneurs during the showcase at 5p.m., then stay to cheer on the winners as they accept cash award prizes totaling up to $85,000!