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Challenge finalist: Prenetics (Hong Kong)

Everyone responds differently to medication, making it a challenge to predict and avoid potentially serious adverse reactions. To remedy this, the iGenes test from Prenetics enables physicians to identify the right drug and the right dosage for each patient based on his or her genetic profile.

     Using a DNA sample taken with a simple cheek swab, doctors can determine which medicines are genetically ill-matched to their patients. The test analyzes 53 genes and covers more than 200 drugs in a wide range of categories, including those for treating cardiovascular disease, diabetes, pain, and pediatric and psychiatric conditions. "Our solution can reduce ADRs, save lives and lower health care costs," CEO Danny Yeung said.

     Another unique aspect of Prenetics' test is that it takes into account Asian-specific genes, which can differ from those of Caucasian and other backgrounds.

     Prenetics has already received financial backing from big players in Asia, including Lippo Group of Indonesia. "We will be looking to enter the markets of Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and greater China, all in 2016," Yeung said.

CEO: Danny Yeung

http://www.prenetics.com/

Twenty-four finalists will be chosen for Pioneers Asia Challenge, the main competition for advanced-stage startups. The Nikkei Asian Review will feature three finalists each week; this is the fifth week of the series and the first to feature entries from Asia. The two other categories of competition -- Pioneers 90 Seconds Pitch and Pioneers Showroom -- are for seed and earlier-stage startups.

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