Shafiee collaborated with the MGH Fertility Center to develop a smartphone-based microchip for at-home male infertility testing. Tests of the lab-based prototype show the smartphone semen analyzer identifies with 98 percent accuracy abnormal semen samples based on sperm concentration and motility.
After he got a provisional patent, Shafiee spoke with CEOs of manufacturing companies and attended conferences to gauge interest in the idea. He also approached BWH’s iHub, a resource center for innovators who want to develop and commercialize their solutions.
“iHub provided pilot funding and assembled a team of people to consult on the project,” Shafiee says. “We interviewed experts in fertility, industry, and academia, and got invaluable feedback.”