Ardy Arianpour on Seqster’s Mission, Growth, and Pharma Tipping Point
By Allison Proffitt
May 2, 2023 | When Seqster was first founded in 2016, co-founder Ardy Arianpour had a lot of experience in next-gen sequencing and a vision for how consumers could control their health information. Seqster is more than a company, Arianpour insists to host, Deborah Borfitz, in the latest Scope of Things podcast. “This is a movement.”
Next-gen sequencing data, Arianpour says, is easy. There are just four bases; you can run analytics on data from any platform.
Health and medical data today are far, far more complex. There are varied medical records held by various healthcare providers, wearable sensor data from Fitbits or Apple Watches, social determinates of health data derived from your zip code, maybe next-gen sequencing data, and much more. “Those data pieces, obviously, do not talk to one another,” Arianpour observes.
Seqster’s mission, then, is to consolidate all of those extremely varied data and deliver it to the patient in a usable way. “With Seqster, we’ve automated EHR data collection, but we also cleanse the data, we visualize the data for the patients and researchers. We’re not a platform. The biggest differentiator is not just that underlying technology that we have created, but the fact that we have the Seqster Operating System that powers real world data that is regulatory-grade and patient matched.”
In the years since Seqster launched, Arianpour says he has found many parts of the business challenging. Getting medical records and harmonizing them is extraordinarily challenging. Reaching individual consumers to market the product was challenging. There have been shifts in the business model over time, which began as direct-to-consumer and more recently has announced several pharma partnerships.
Arianpour flags Seqster’s 2020 agreement with Takeda Pharmaceuticals as a tipping point. “That changed everything as to create a patient-engagement platform for pharma that was powered by the Seqster Operating System,” he says. Since 2020, Seqster has completed public work with AbbVie, Boehringer Ingelheim, PatientsLikeMe, UBC, INC, and others.