Co-Founder and President, Operations – Owlstone NanotechBilly-Boyle-2

Cambridge, UK-based Boyle is the co-founder of chemical sensors startup Owlstone Nanotech; Owlstone sensors can be programmed to filter out and quantify any chemical by its odour — just as dogs sniff out drugs or explosives at airports. Its latest chip is an experimental diagnostic tool for colon cancer, simply by identifying the unique “smell” of a cancer patient’s urine.

Boyle wasn’t initially interested in making medical devices — he wanted to make sensitive, cheap sensors for military, industrial and security purposes. But when his wife was diagnosed with advanced colon cancer, he realised that Owlstone’s technology could be a breakthrough device for earlier and quicker cancer diagnoses. It is currently being tested on patients with colon cancer and ulcerative colitis in the Warwick University hospital, and Boyle will be discussing his work at WIRED Health.