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March 24, 2020 | Tom Ballard

Mayer says EDP Biotech exploring ways to use its facilities to help with COVID-19 pandemic

Eric Mayer, Chief Executive Officer of EDP Biotech Corporation, was the first entrepreneur to respond to our request for updates on how local start-ups and others are responding to the “shelter in place” and remote working that characterizes much of today’s business environment.

The medical device company, located on Baum Drive in the Bearden area of Knoxville, is focused on the development and commercialization of immunodiagnostic tests. Its signature product is ColoPlex™ that is designed to detect colorectal cancer at early stages.

Here are Mayer’s thoughts on the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact of EDP Biotech.

  • How is your start-up functioning in this uncertain environment? We are adapting to the uncertainty each day and remaining focused on our core mission – to deliver cost effective diagnostics that detect disease early. Like many around the country, we are listening to advice of the public health officials and keeping the workplace a safe environment.
  • Have you had to pivot and, if so, how? If not, are you considering doing so? We are exploring ways that we can use our facility (which is biosafety level 2) and our cancer blood testing equipment and re-purpose the lab to help during this pandemic response. While it is not a pivot for the business, we understand that these difficult times require immediate and creative solutions, and EDP Biotech has offered our help in any way needed at the local and state level.
  • If you were not a remote worker before the coronavirus escalated, how is it going for you and your team now? What lessons have you learned that you can share with others? We have always had remote workers, consultants and advisors who have interacted with us remotely, so the transition has not been difficult. We do still need for someone to be at the lab each day monitoring equipment, performing routine daily calibration and maintenance, etc., however we have attempted to limit staff contact with others (i.e., non-essential meetings, visitors, lab tours, etc.) to keep everyone safe and “socially distanced.”

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