Editor’s note: Joe Magno is Executive Director, the North Carolina Center of Innovation Network, which is a partner with WRAL TechWire

RALEIGH – Since 2014 when Chad Price and Josh Arant founded Mako Medical Laboratories we began seeing Mako’s “Sharkmobiles” becoming more visible on the road. Mako Medical Laboratories has become one of the fastest growing “home grown” companies in North Carolina and continues to grow with offices and “Sharkmobile” sightings spreading across the country.

Both Chad and Josh might attribute some of their success to the fact that they have focused on hiring veterans as well as their strong science and business backgrounds. Now Mako is working to help our veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder [PTSD] by helping to develop better and more accurate approaches to treatment.

MakoMynd, the partnership between Mako and Mynd Analytics, is leveraging the latest breakthroughs is diagnostics and treatment to help veterans deal with PTSD in a more accurate and focused way. The MakoMynd study is unprecedented, combining Mako’s Pharmacogenetic (PGx) testing with Quantitative Electroencephalography (Q-EEG) tests and providing both psychiatric and primary care services in the same facility to give a total picture of veterans’ health.

  • VIDEO: What is Mako? Watch a video overview at https://vimeo.com/190764712

Mako’s PGx test covers 207 medications that cross over 34 drug classes, which covers 10 therapeutic areas used in primary care. This will be combined with MYnd Analytic’s PEER report, which compares patients’ Q-EEG results to those of thousands of others to predict the likelihood of response by an individual patient to a range of treatments of behavioral disorders.

The Q-EEG test measures brain wave activity to allow providers to accurately diagnose patients based on the brain’s function, and Mako’s PGx tests show providers how medications will work in an individual’s body, allowing them to prescribe the right medication in the right dosage the first time.

MYnd Analytics has been studying PTSD in US Military veterans using EEG since 1987. The addition of Mako’s PGx testing and the opportunity for patients to receive total care in one facility is a revolutionary approach that could alter the way providers view and treat mental health illnesses.

Mako’s participation in this study comes as no surprise to those familiar with the company’s story. Mako has supported US Military veterans since its inception in 2014.

“At Mako, we really strive to give back in any way we can, and we can’t imagine a better way to do that than by investing in those who have given their all for our country,” says COO Josh Arant.

Mako’s Director of Logistics, Adam Price, a former active duty captain and combat veteran, and one of many veterans employed by Mako, says he watched as many of his fellow Soldiers struggled after leaving the service. Price notes: “I’ve seen the current system fail to give Soldiers the treatment they need. Now that we have the technology and science to determine what does and does not work best for each individual, we have an awesome opportunity to really help those with TBIs [traumatic brain injuries] and PTSD.”

The MakoMynd study is still in its early stages, but it is expected to provide better treatment options for veterans, improve their quality of life, decrease the suicide rate by catching the problem at the start, and lay the groundwork for similar studies. Those involved hope that the study will result in a larger impact on the veteran and mental health communities, encouraging veterans to seek treatment and providers to broaden their view of their patients.