Have you ever wondered if the pathology turn-around time could be faster and came to the conclusion that the only way to achieve that is to skip the tissue sectioning and staining? Now it is possible, with optical scanning microscopy by Instapath.
Today’s guest, David Tulman, is the chief clinical officer of Instapath, a small startup using optical scanning microscopy to image fresh tissue without fixing and staining it.Working as a clinical trial manager exposed David to different areas of medicine, so he decided to dive deeper and get a Ph.D. However, pipetting for 12 hours a day for 5 years of the program to do basic research did not sound attractive…so he found a different program – a Ph.D. in bioinnovation. As a result of this program not only did he get his Ph.D. degree but also co-founded a biomedical startup company – Instapath, whose mission is to deliver pathology diagnoses to patients faster – while they are still on the operating table.To achieve that, Instapath uses optical scanning microscopy.
This cutting-edge technology can scan a piece of fresh, un-sliced tissue and virtually generate an image resembling a 5 um thick H&E stained section. This can be achieved by staining the tissue with fluorescent dies, one of them being eosin itself, which happens to be fluorescent. The dies are water-based and enable the generation of a high-resolution pseudo H&E image. Instapath focuses on the speed of the pathology evaluation. For an 18-gauge biopsy the time from tissue removal from the body, through fluorescent staining, image processing, and upload to the image viewer is between two and three minutes. This is amazing compared to the traditional process that takes several days, or even frozen sections that should take around 20 minutes.Current applications of Instapath’s technology and system include:sample screening for biobanking,alternative to fluorescent and confocal microscopy,And in the near future, following the results of ongoing validation studies the company thinks there is a good chance thatoptical scanning microscopy could replace frozen section evaluation.To learn more about Instapath visit: https://www.instapathbio.com/ Ps. David was a great guest of this episode but he is also a podcast host himself. Together with Giovanni Lujan, they co-host the “Beyond the Scope” podcast by Digital Pathology Association.
This episode’s resources: Publications about optical scanning microscopy co-authored by the Instapath Team: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5553202/https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4592466/https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5082869/Beyond the Scope podcast https://digitalpathologyassociation.org/dpa-podcast-beyond-the-scopeDigital pathology crash course: https://www.subscribepage.com/digital_pathology_crash_course
Aleksandra Zuraw: [00:00:57] Today, my guest is David Tulman, the chief clinical officer, and one of the co-founders of Instapath, Instapath’s goal is to bring the pathology diagnostic capabilities to the patients while still on the operating table. Hello David, how are you today?
David Tulman: [00:01:17] Good morning. How are you doing? I’m doing well.
Aleksandra: [00:01:20] Good morning. Thank you so much for joining me on the podcast. And let’s start with you. Who are you? What’s your background and a little bit about your company. What’s your role there and how did it all happen?
David: [00:01:33] Sure. It’s my pleasure to be here. Thank you so much for having me on. I am David Tulman. I am one of the founders of Instapath.[00:01:41] We are a startup digital pathology company. And we have been in business since 2017.
Aleksandra: [00:01:52] You’re one of the co-founders. How many are you? How many founded the company?
David: [00:01:56] So we have [00:01:57] three co-founders and my technical title is chief clinical officer, which is, as in these startups, titles are sometimes made up . As a founder, it means that I do a lot of different things.[00:02:11]Primarily my role is the user experience with the product. So I’m the person that’s in charge of the clinical studies that we conduct, the demos that we do for our customers somewhat of a glorified sales role, a lot of customer relationships and talking to people in digital pathology space, trying to find new applications for our technology.[00:02:37] And then on the business side, I do everything for our company, from HR to finance to managing our wonderful team.
Aleksandra: [00:02:47] How big is the team?
David: [00:02:49] So we have nine employees. We have grown from, I guess the three of us to nine over the [00:02:57] past couple of years. And then of course we have advisors and consultants that we work with on an ancillary basis as well.
Aleksandra: [00:03:03] So what is your background?
David: [00:03:05] My story is pretty unconventional how I got to where I am with Instapath today.
Aleksandra: [00:03:12] I think Instpath is also unconventional in the digital pathology space, but I hear myself saying that with every guest I interview, but they are unique. Okay.
David: [00:03:22] Yeah. I guess we’ll talk about that in a minute, but okay.[00:03:26] So my story of how I got here, I was I was working at Ohio State University as a clinical trials manager after I graduated from college and it exposed me to a lot of different areas in medicine. And I decided that I wanted to go get a PhD after working full time for Ohio State. And during the process, honestly, I was getting a little ,I was a little [00:03:57] unhappy or unsure of the some of the interviews that I was going through.[00:04:01] Cause these were like very like traditional PhD programs. Basic science, you’re going to be pipetting things into Petri dishes for 12 hours a day, and that’s going to be your life for five or six years. So, I’m sure a lot of I’m sure you and a lot of the listeners have been there before.[00:04:17]
Aleksandra: [00:04:17] And you did not find that attractive?
David: [00:04:20] So I was, yeah, sorry. I didn’t, I was not, I was, I did not want to go down that path, but this wonderful opportunity came about. It’s a really funny story. My dad was sitting next to someone on a plane, back when you could travel. Yeah and fly on a plane safely.[00:04:39] So he was sitting next to someone on a plane that was a professor at Tulane University in New Orleans. And so they got to talking and he shared with this professor what I was doing at Ohio State with clinical trials and the professor said, hey, at [00:04:57] Tulane, we have this new PhD program that combines scientific, like biomedical engineering oriented research with business and entrepreneurship. And it is the only program in the country that offers something like that.[00:05:11] So he gets home, he was really excited and he tells me about it. And I’m like, this is really cool. I went on the internet and I looked it up and I was like, I think I’m a really good fit for this.[00:05:21] I am super interested in this. This is a brand new program I’d like to give it a try. So I applied, interviewed, got accepted. It was by far and away, my first choice for a PhD program. And I moved from Ohio to New Orleans to start this bio- innovation PhD program. I was part of the second class ever in the world that was accepted to a PhD program like that.[00:05:50] And while at Tulane, I joined a biomedical optics lab where I met [00:05:57] my business partners and we developed the technology that is the basis of Instapath . And during that time, my business partners and I, we got some funding from the National Science Foundation, a grant called I-Corps to do customer discovery for our market, like how the technology would be best used in the healthcare marketplace.[00:06:22] And that led us to essentially forming a digital pathology company, spinning it out from Tulane University, licensing the technology to the company, raising money and Instapath was born. So[00:06:36] that sure was a successful PhD program.[00:06:39] Yeah. And we also did graduate and get our PhDs in the process.[00:06:44] So we were graduating right around the time that Instapath, we were spinning out Insta path. We were, it was like it was happening simultaneously.
Aleksandra: [00:06:51] So Instapath , I assume it has something to do with instant [00:06:57] pathology.
David: [00:06:57] Yep.
Aleksandra: [00:06:59] Tell us about Instapath.
David: [00:07:00] So our long-term goal is to be able to give patients and physicians that treat these patients a confident diagnosis of their biopsy at the patient bedside.[00:07:15] So in order to do that, we’ve developed a technology that is a tissue scanner that allows you to image the tissue analogous to an H&E, but without doing any of the fixing or any of the cutting,
Aleksandra: [00:07:30] How exactly do you do that? Or, obviously it’s your proprietary technology, but just to give an image. How is it done? It’s not whole it is tissue imaging, but it’s not scanning tissue slides. How do you do it?
David: [00:07:46] Yeah. So it’s, it is scanning a piece of fresh tissue that is uncut. We do have a patent on it. But all of that is published now.
Aleksandra: [00:07:54] So please tell us whatever you can to [00:07:57] reveal.
David: [00:07:57] Yeah, I can tell a decent amount. We did publish a decent amount on this in academia while we were at Tulane and I’m still continued to publish on it based on our validation studies
Aleksandra: [00:08:06] I can link all of those resources down in the show notes.
David: [00:08:09] And but the, on a high level, the way it works is we use a technique called optical sectioning microscopy, which in principle you shine light on a thick piece of tissue.[00:08:22]And you you use algorithms and manipulation of the light to reject the background light that’s coming from the the thickness of the tissue which would in a normal microscope cause the tissue to look out of focus. But what that allows you to do is virtually cut the sample as opposed to physically cutting it.[00:08:42] So we make that thick piece of tissue appear like a five micron section of the surface. And we use a fluorescent staining protocol that is analogous to H&E to make the final [00:08:57] image actually look like an H&E.
Aleksandra: [00:08:59] Okay. So it’s virtual H&E, wow , that’s why I say this is different than everything else. I have not seen a company doing that commercially so far in the digital pathology market. But you tell me if you have competition with this technology.
David: [00:09:19] There are certainly there are companies that are emerging from academia. Just like we did. Many of them are in a similar stage as us.[00:09:28] A couple of them may have even started earlier than us. They’re different types of just different types of constructions of microscopy technologies. But the overall goal is, can you get an H&E or can you do histology without , with bypassing the fixing in the cutting process?[00:09:48] And I think that there’s I think the competition is good for the space. Cause I think it’s gonna make all of these companies [00:09:57] innovate and have better solutions. Some of them, some of the companies, with these microscopy technologies, there’s trade-offs. So for example, our company, we optimize imaging of the surface of the tissue and we try to do it as fast as possible and give the pathologists or the users the thinnest images possible without losing any of the resolution.[00:10:21]Whereas other companies may choose to sacrifice on speed but improve, but do like more a 3d imaging or 3d reconstruction. So I think long-term, there’s probably a place for all of these companies in the marketplace. And what Instapath is focused on in addition to the speed is the workflow and the user experience.[00:10:44] So our goal is to provide our customers an end to end solution. So not just the microscope itself, but the means to automatically stain the [00:10:57] tissue, image it, upload it to a remote viewer and store the images on a cloud. And we’ve been able to build all of those things.
Aleksandra: [00:11:06] So you do have a microscope, you do have a kind of staining.[00:11:09] Can you quickly, briefly say, how does it differ from that classical H&E tissue processing? You already said there is no paraffin embedding, no formalin fixing, but the other steps.
David: [00:11:21] So the really the other difference is the stains that we use they’re fluorescent.[00:11:26] That’s. That’s how we get the contrast. That’s analogous to H&E . For the hematoxylin analog we use a proprietary nuclear stain. That’s a fluorescent on one of our wavelengths that we’ve built with the system. And then for the eosin analog, it turns out that eosin is fluorescent.[00:11:45] And it is compatible with our system. So we actually use real eosin to stay in the tissue. So it’s a pseudo H&E But one of the stains is eosin which I think is pretty cool. And what’s also important is that we [00:11:57] use we, we found a way to use water based stains which we get asked this all the time. Are your stains based in ethanol because, ethanol stains the can be harmful to the tissue for downstream testing. But we found a way to avoid doing that. So we’ve got the pseudo virtual H&E whatever you want to call it. We’ve got the optical sectioning microscopy that gives you the no fix, no cut histology.[00:12:22] And then instead of having physical glass slides we have digital images that are stored on a cloud and on a remote viewer that you can use to navigate through the images, zoom in and out, annotate share with your colleagues…
Aleksandra: [00:12:38] And how are those images acquired?
David: [00:12:40] The images are acquired through the microscope.
Aleksandra: [00:12:42] Okay.[00:12:43] So there’s a as a camera on[00:12:45] your microscope.
David: [00:12:46] Yeah. Yeah. So yeah, there, the camera, that camera on the microscope.
Aleksandra: [00:12:49] So you say you optimize for speed. How fast is this process?
David: [00:12:53] So a 18 gauge biopsy [00:12:57] from the time that it’s removed from the body, including the time that it takes tostain image, process and upload it’s about two to three minutes from sample to image. If you have a, like a bigger tissue, like a tissue chunk we have some biobanks that are like, using quarter sized or half dollar size pieces of tissue with the system. It can take up to five minutes but we’ve tried to make it as fast as possible.[00:13:20]The comparable technology is confocal microscopy. The differences in confocal the scanning occurs point by point. So it pixel by pixel, cause it has to be done through a pinhole with our technology, we’re able to image an entire camera frame at a time.[00:13:37] So that’s how we get the speed advantage in, and it ends up being about 10 to 20 times faster at scanning than a conventional confocal microscope.
Aleksandra: [00:13:46] What are their real life applications that you’re using it for or that your clients are using it for?
David: [00:13:52] So right now the intended use is for some research [00:13:57] applications.[00:13:57]We we have biobanks that are using it for quality control of tissue. So what happens is they get these chunks of tissue from surgical procedures that would otherwise be thrown away. But they they want to freeze the tissue for their researchers to use in the future. And one of the issues traditionally with that process has been, or if you want to do that, you have to know what’s in the tissue.[00:14:22] So you have to. You have to cut. You have to do. Yeah. You have to do basically destroy half of it to see what’s in it. What if the other half doesn’t have the tumor cells in it that you, that the half that you destroyed does, then you’re researcher is out of luck. So what we allow our biobanks to do is non-destructively get an idea of the tumor content and preserve the entire tissue.[00:14:46]Other research applications people are using are using it for a low cost confocal microscope, confocal microscopy- the technology is a little expensive and [00:14:57] people researchers don’t always need all the bells and whistles that comes with it. So with our system customers can use it as just like a fluorescence microscope. They can image,DAPI stains, GFP and some other biomarkers and immunohistochemistry fluorescent tags that we’re currently working on. Long-term we want this to be, we want this to be used in the clinic for patients.[00:15:24]So we have a a workflow validation study going on right now. Basically comparing evaluation of our images versus frozen section evaluation and touch prep cytology. We think that there’s a good chance that our method could replace the cumbersome frozen section evaluation in the future.[00:15:45] And I hope that our studies are able to show that soon .
Aleksandra: [00:15:50] I keep my fingers crossed. And when you have the results, let me know. And I’m going to link it in the show notes as well.[00:15:57] [00:15:57] You had this PhD program that was a combination of science and entrepreneurship. So you basically were trained in setting up a startup, but what do you wish you had known before you started that was not taught to you at your program?[00:16:15] Was there something that, you know, Oh, if I knew that this path would be less curvy or, faster,
David: [00:16:22] Just I wish someone would have told me how long it takes to get a contract done with a large hospital organization. Huh. Yeah. I don’t know what else to say about that. It just, it takes a long time,
Aleksandra: [00:16:38] And it’s a valuable insight. And was there something that didn’t go well, something, a failure that later it turned out to be a good learning experience for you, but at that time you thought, Oh
David: [00:16:49] Yeah, there’s been several. The funniest one, there was a couple of funny ones.[00:16:53]This is how I learned not to be bashful [00:16:57] about approaching people for meetings. We’re trying it at this stage of our company, we’re trying to get as much feedback from potential users of our system as possible. And in order to do that, we need to get a lot of meetings and a lot of demos.[00:17:11]Early on when we were doing our large-scale customer discovery we were traveling all around the country and from this program, we actually had a quota of people of pathologists that we had to talk to per week. And or else we would get in trouble, we would get in trouble with the program and like potentially get kicked out of the program and not be able to continue our discovery.[00:17:33]So there was one week where we were a little, we were a little low on numbers and I was just like trying to find potential users, potential pathologists to interview about how they might use our technology. I was in Los Angeles that week, cause I had, cause we had some meetings with other pathologists, but our numbers were low.[00:17:53] So I went to a [00:17:57] hospital in Los Angeles. Didn’t have a meeting set with anybody.
Aleksandra: [00:18:01] Just walked into?
David: [00:18:02] I just walked in. Yeah. This hospital was a little bit more locked down and secure than most other hospitals are. But I, so there was some security stopped me at the front and they asked who I was here to see.[00:18:13] And I just had I had looked up on the internet. I had the name of a pathologist, like in my mind. So I was like, I’m here to see this person. I like, I just made it up. I have an appointment with this person. And so they let me pass. And so I was going door to door.[00:18:25] I was literally going door to door in the department, trying to find no, trying to find anybody that I could talk to you to like, get an interview, to get some feedback about how they might use our product. Anyways I ended up getting kicked out of the hospital and and it, but it was fine.[00:18:39] It was like, there weren’t like, I wasn’t doing anything. I wasn’t doing anything bad. I was just trying to, I was just trying to talk, get honest feedback about our system and there were no long-term consequences of that. I have, since I actually have been back to that hospital invited [00:18:57] once and they didn’t remember kicking me out the first time.[00:18:59]I learned that in order to develop relationships you can’t be bashful. You have to take risks. You have to be somewhat aggressive when it goes to reaching out people because, cause you never know through that method we’ve developed a lot of really cool relationships with pathologists that I, if I had probably not, if I had not learned that lesson, I probably would have been too scared to approach it.
Aleksandra: [00:19:21] Did you have a chance to do something else or was pathology the given discipline that you were working in? And I’m asking that because I want to know why pathology.
David: [00:19:35] Yeah. I’m glad you asked that because when we started off trying to find applications for the optical sectioning microscopy technology that we had initially built pathology was part of the research and we had a hypothesis that it would be applicable to pathology, but we were pretty open-minded in [00:19:57] terms of what the business would turn into. We had considered like other areas of science. Forensic science, chemical science research only indications, but the more people that we talk to their feedback for us was the technology was uniquely positioned to serve the pathology market because now as we’re going through this digital pathology revolution and at the time that we were starting the company slide scanners had just been approved by the FDA and that revolution was taking off in the US and had already been taking off pretty good in Europe.[00:20:37] And people that we talked to said, yeah, so the next natural step is okay, we have these slide scanners that scan glass slides, but can technologies exist to take this one step further and do it, and bypass this fixing and cutting process. It was really through those interviews, through that market discovery process that I was telling the story about [00:20:57] earlier that, that led us to the pathology market.[00:21:00] And I’m happy to be here. I think it’s I think we can serve it pretty well.
Aleksandra: [00:21:05] So more like you had the technology as one piece of the puzzle and you were looking for the other piece that would fit best to your technology or like key and the lock principle, you had the key, you needed to find the lock and unlock something that was not unlocked yet.
David: [00:21:22] Yeah. The term is a product market fit. And so we found that. This, the microscope itself, was positioned well to serve a point of care evaluation, pathology market, but also in order to be really successful at it, we needed to take that a step further. We needed to not just provide the microscope technology, but we needed to provide an entire workflow for our users.[00:21:50] And that’s how we, that’s what led us to develop the automatic staining kits and the viewing, [00:21:57] remote viewing platform.
Aleksandra: [00:21:58] So you worked with the pathologist during the development, you learned the workflow you had to interview a quota of pathologists. So there was a lot of pathology expertise flowing into your product.[00:22:11] How do you work with pathologists now that you have this already figured out, there is a product market fit and you’re know what you’re doing. What does the role of pathologists in your process right now?
David: [00:22:22] Oh it’s still very important that, and it’s a little hard to do now because of COVID, but it’s still very important that I am able to go to the hospital and see not only the pathology evaluation part of it, but also see the the surgical or interventional radiology element to it.[00:22:39]Not so much now because of COVID, but I spend a lot of time in interventional radiology biopsy suites, just tracking a piece of tissue from the time of removal to the time that it’s on a glass side. And I’ve done that so much. Now. I do have a, I do have a [00:22:57] pilot going on at one of the hospitals that I’m working with here in Houston where I’m still able to do that.[00:23:02] But we’re living in this virtual world. I do a lot of virtual demos with pathologists and that mainly entails showing them our image library cause we’ve taken images of all sorts of different organs and getting their thoughts on image quality, applications, other like disease types that we need to try to target.[00:23:25] So really just trying to build up our library of good images with our technology and working with the pathologist to get feedback so we can keep improving quality.
Aleksandra: [00:23:35] So you have the technology at the core of your business, and then the user experience that you’re optimizing obviously user experience, there can be a lot of innovation as those software capabilities, virtual capabilities evolve. Is there. A way to innovate on your technology as well, or is this [00:23:57] a lock down thing that is going to serve you forever and you’re going to be building around it. How do you approach innovation in those two aspects?
David: [00:24:05] And we’re always going to innovate. We’re gonna, I we released, like, we released a very early prototype of our system into the field for tests for what I call alpha testing last year and it was the, we were using like a lot of our components were like 3d printed[00:24:27] we manufacture everything in house, like hands screwed together.
Aleksandra: [00:24:31] A minimum viable product,
David: [00:24:33] A minimum viable product. Even before that, I was doing demos with pathologists before we even put the microscope inside of like a box. So if you look at, if you look at the product today, it actually looks like a real medical device, but about a year ago or maybe a little over a year ago It just looked like a bunch of wires all over the place.[00:24:54] And so that’s that’s our philosophy [00:24:57] is that we’re gonna we’re gonna try to expose as many users as possible to our system. No matter what state it is, even if it’s an early prototype. It’s not, the technology is not fully fleshed out or not fully developed. We’re going to get, we want to get that user feedback. Cause I think that’s just going to continue to make the products better.[00:25:16] So where we go from here is of course, like continuing to optimize the workflow for the users. That could mean innovations with the, With the the way that we stay in tissue and place the tissue on the on the microscope all the way to how it’s viewed on the cloud. And from a microscope standpoint we’re trying to turn it from like a prototype into a, consistently manufacturable device.[00:25:45] So the footprint’s going to get smaller. We may not need every single component that’s in there now, we’re just trying to determine what’s what are like the must haves from the user. So I [00:25:57] imagine that the microscope itself over time is going to continue to get smaller and footprint and also, also a more cost-effective to build.
Aleksandra: [00:26:06] Do you incorporate AI artificial intelligence in any part of your process or at any step?
David: [00:26:13] Not right now. We have the capability to do that with our images. But we don’t have. We don’t have a true AI expert on our team right now. So in the future, it’s something that we want to do. And we’re going to have to decide if we want to do that in-house or if we want to partner with some of the other great companies that are out there innovating in the AI digital pathology space.
Aleksandra: [00:26:42] And where do you see AI applications in your workflow or your system?
David: [00:26:47] Yeah, I think initially it’s going to be, sometimes when you’re, when pathologists are evaluating like a biopsy or a surgical margin for tumor, it [00:26:57] can be like finding a needle in a haystack. It can be like trying to find like a do you know, a specific pattern or a small amount of tumor cells on a relatively large tissue area? So my thought is can we develop algorithms that help narrow down their search for those tumor cells? So I envision a system where not only do you get an image of the biopsy or, surgical margin as a whole but there’s a, like a nice box that’s around the area that, Hey, you might want to look here.
Aleksandra: [00:27:27] So image and image analysis, basically
David: [00:27:29] Long-term. So I think short-term, I think that’s something that we’d be interested in. Long-term- can AI do the entire diagnosis for the pathologist?
Aleksandra: [00:27:40] We’ll see.
David: [00:27:41] I think it’s an interesting question.
Aleksandra: [00:27:43] We’ll see you. We’ll see. And for those who are watching us and not only listening, David has headphones like I have, and he has a microphone because he also is a podcast host.
David: [00:27:54] Yep.
Aleksandra: [00:27:55] Tell me about your [00:27:57] podcast, David.
David: [00:27:57] We just launched it. It’s actually, yeah, so it’s actually it’s being hosted through the Digital Pathology Association. The podcast is in video format and could be found at I think it’s digitalpathologyassociation.org. We have posted three episodes so far.[00:28:17] The podcast is called “Beyond the scope”. It is a digital pathology focused podcast. I am, co-hosting it with Giovanni Lujan, who is a pathologist at Ohio State University . He’s a computational pathology informatics-oriented guy.[00:28:40] So it’s cool. We have a combination of me who’s like an entrepreneur technologist and him, who’s a pathologist like AI guy. So we cover a lot of the basis of digital pathology. But we’re just getting started. Our goal is to have guests that can talk about [00:28:57] their experience with digital pathology, shed some light on how it’s being adopted both in the U S and also, we’ve got some international guests lined up that are going to talk about how adoption differs around the world.[00:29:09] We’re going to be doing “how to” podcast. If there’s department chairs that are out there that are wanting to start a digital pathology program at their hospital, we’re going to have guests that are going to come on and talk about how to do that. We’re going to have guests that are going to come on and talk about if you want to do machine learning, train an algorithm to do some AI, how, where do you get started?[00:29:29] As well as like you’re doing here, learn about the stories of the important people in our industry.
Aleksandra: [00:29:36] I’m going to link this one as well. In the show notes, there has been a boom in the podcast, the digital pathology podcast scene, since COVID hit, which is great. I think because, we want to tell people what’s going on.
David: [00:29:52] Yeah, I think everybody started a podcast in 2020. It might not just be digital [00:29:57] pathology.
Aleksandra: [00:29:57] I guess, I guess. Which is good because podcasts are cool. And that’s why I have one.
David: [00:30:03] I actually before I started the , agreed to, to help out with the DPA podcast I had started a podcast with my friends.[00:30:13]Completely unrelated to what I do for work. So were my friends and I are like we’re from Ohio. So we’re like really big cultural ball fans. So we just decided to start. And we’ve been doing this since 2016 or 2017,
Aleksandra: [00:30:26] You are like a podcast pioneer!
David: [00:30:28] We’ve been doing like a weekly college football podcast, just for fun, like for our friends and our family.[00:30:34] And so I had already had experience doing podcasts before starting to help out with the DPA one. So now I’ve been doing it for a little while now.
Aleksandra: [00:30:44] Great. Cool. Anything else that I forgot to ask anything relevant to our conversation that is or something fun or did we cover everything?
David: [00:30:56] We [00:30:57] could probably go on all day about really fun stories. Oh, I can end with another fun story. And this is like a message to all the entrepreneurs out there that are, especially in the digital pathology space that are, getting you’re getting your companies going is, when going back to when we were doing the, when we were getting started and when we were doing that customer discovery we were getting meetings with pathologists.[00:31:19]We had our first meeting the first time that our first meeting with the pathologist ever. And it was scary because once again, we were in LA and as traffic in LA is horrible. It’s terrible. It’s hard to, it’s hard to get anywhere.[00:31:35]And so we were trying to get to our first interview and this was during the this was during president Obama’s last year in office and he was in Los Angeles to do interviews for the Jimmy Kimmel tonight show. Which was happened to be like right next door to where we were staying.[00:31:57] [00:31:57] So we were running late for our meeting with this pathologist at UCLA, which, as the Crow flies was only two or three miles away from where we were staying. But in LA traffic time, that’s like 45 minutes, normal traffic time, 45 minutes. And then of course the street, all of the streets were blocked off because president Obama, his motorcade was coming through, so we couldn’t get to our car.[00:32:22] So I was like, terrified that Instapath was never going to start because we weren’t going to get to our first meeting with the pathologist. So, we ended up doing, this is really bad. They had the streets blocked off. We ended up running across the street to get to the other side so that we could get away from the streets so that we could just walk or slash run away from the streets that were blocked off.[00:32:46] So he could get a cab that could take us to the meeting with the pathologist. And I was, as I was running across the street, I was like, I hope. I hope I hope we don’t get, [00:32:57] we don’t get a ticket or something. Like we don’t get arrested or something like that for going across the street, but it turned out okay.[00:33:03] We ended up getting out of the high traffic zone. We ended up finding a cab that could take us to the UCLA campus to meet with our pathologist. We were a little late. But as healthcare professionals are always running late, so it wasn’t a big deal. And we had our first interview and all was well.[00:33:19] And I learned that from that, if you want to make this startup thing happen, you have to do it takes so that’s okay. Navigating through a block street in LA because of presidential traffic was, how it all started.
Aleksandra: [00:33:32] So before we finish let the listeners know where they can find you online.
David: [00:33:40] So the company Instpathbio.com, we have all sorts of different ways that all sorts of different contact forms and in ways that you can reach out to us. Our company is on Twitter. At Instapathbio.com, we have a [00:33:57] weekly blog that we post on the website and on Twitter we have a bi-weekly newsletter.[00:34:04] Where we, share information, not just about Instapath, but also about what’s going on within the industry. Papers we’re reading resources that we think our customers may find useful. And for the “beyond the scope” podcast, that’s hosted on the digital pathology association website, which is digitalpathologyassociation.org
Aleksandra: [00:34:27] And I’m going to link all of this in the show notes. Thank you so much for taking your time, talking to me and our listeners, and I wish you a great day.
David: [00:34:36] Okay. Thank you so much for having me you as well.
Aleksandra: [00:34:40] Thank you.
David: [00:34:41] Okay. Bye bye.