Senior Director, Diagnostics, Global Health Labs, Inc.
Bernhard H. Weigl
phone: (206) 265-2227
Diagnostics for Global Health
Microfluidics and other low cost dx formats for POC and home use
Dr. Bernhard H Weigl is the Senior Director, Diagnostics Research and Development at Global Health Labs, a new nonprofit organization created by Gates Ventures and the Gates Foundation, and the successor organization to Global Good. Gates Ventures is Bill Gates’ private office. A primary function of GH Labs is to answer R&D questions for Diagnostics for Low Resource Settings in collaboration with major BMGF grantees, as well as to develop novel diagnostic devices designed for low resource settings to the prototype stage.
At GH Labs, and at Intellectual Ventures/Global Good previously, he leads work to develop the next generation of highly sensitive diagnostic assays for diseases of relevance in developing countries, including TB, cervical cancer, malaria, neglected tropical diseases, and more recently, COVID. His team also develops and codevelops novel platforms for possible commercialization through BMGF partners, including polydisperse digital droplet assays and simplified point-of-care nucleic acid assays, ultra-sensitive strip-based immunoassays (including the recently commercialized Clip COVID Rapid Antigen Test), and other biotechnology research for low resource settings. His latest major R&D program is the development of an ultra-low cost, fully lateral flow-based isothermal nucleic acid amplification platform called NAATOS, with an initial application in TB diagnostics using the oral swab sample format.
Previously he led the PATH Diagnostics Group where he oversaw global health diagnostics programs funded by a variety of sources such as NIAID and NIBIB, the Grand Challenges program of the BMGF, USAID, and the PATH Health Innovation Portfolio. He also served as Portfolio Leader for Non-Communicable Disease Diagnostics and as Director of the National Institutes of Health-funded Center for Point-of-Care Diagnostics for Global Health.
Before joining PATH, both at the University of Washington and at Micronics, Inc. (Redmond, Washington, now a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America) where he was a scientific cofounder), Dr. Weigl led teams that developed both instrument-based and stand-alone microfluidic medical diagnostic disposables, including the first FDA-approved instrument-free microfluidic test, the ABORhCard®.
His scientific interests include traditional and paper-based microfluidics as well as any assay platform that allows simplification and integration of previously complex assays as well. As chronic diseases, and especially diabetes, are emerging as a major health threat in developing countries he has also focused on their diagnosis, screening, and treatment. Other areas of interest include diagnostics-related health systems topics such as more rational diagnostic algorithms, evaluation and selection of the most appropriate diagnostic tool for a particular application using metrics beyond sensitivity and specificity, and patient and customer experience and health-seeking behavior through diagnostic interfaces. He has led projects across the diagnostics value chain, from invention and proof of principle though product introduction and support.
In addition to his R&D and management roles he has also served expert witness and legal technical consultant on a number of intellectual property cases with different patent law firms, including depositions and serving as a witness at trials.
Dr. Weigl received his M.Sc (Mag. rer. nat.) and Ph.D. (Dr. rer. nat.) from Karl-Franzens-University Graz and has completed post-doctoral studies at the University of Southampton and the University of Washington. He has authored more than 140 scientific publications and is an inventor on over 80 US patents and published patent applications. His work has been cited over 13,000 times by other researchers. Dr. Weigl is also an Affiliate Professor at the University of Washington, Department of Bioengineering.
Dr. rer. nat., Mag.rer.nat, Analytical Chemistry
1987 – 1993
Undergrad studies, Chemistry
1984 – 1987