Cell IDx was formed in 2013, funded by an NCI Phase II contract to develop a multiplex assay for breast cancer tissue diagnostics. With this support, we took a new approach to the challenge of multiplexing in immunofluorescence microscopy. We were inspired by flow cytometry, which can interrogate a dozen or more antigens on a single cell in different fluorescence channels just as easily as measuring a single parameter. While commercial fluorescence microscopes have tremendous capabilities for multicolor analysis, simple methods and reagents for simultaneous detection of four or more targets in a single tissue section remained lacking. Through the grant funding, Cell IDx has developed a modified hapten-based technology, which forms the basis of our UltraPlex mxIF multiplex immunofluorescence platform. UltraPlex mxIF allows multiplexing of four or more antibodies, even from a single species, in a simple, rapid two-step procedure providing previously unavailable information on cellular phenotype, marker up-regulation, and cellular co-localization. Cell IDx was awarded a second NCI Phase II grant.

Cell IDx founders, David Schwartz, PhD, and Professor Stephen Kron, MD, PhD:

  • have over 50 years of experience in cellular analysis, immunology, assay development, and bio-organic chemistry,
  • have been jointly awarded over $3,000,000 in government grants and contracts over since 2010, and
  • multiple patented technologies have been developed from their collaboration, including the preparation and use of antibody-oligonucleotide conjugates for multiplex immunoassays.

Detection of HER2 (green), ER (purple,) and PR (pink) on triple positive breast cancer tissue using Cell IDx’s UltraPlex technology, acquired on a Leica SP5 AOBS II STED-CW microscope (courtesy Vytas Bindokas, PhD, Integrated Light Microscopy Core, the University of Chicago).

Our Team

David Schwartz, PhD

Co-Founder, CEO, CSO

Publications & Citations



Has over 30 years experience developing novel bioconjugation chemistries for both in vivo therapeutics and in vivo and in vitro diagnostics; leads the team at Cell IDx. Dr. Schwartz applied his extensive background in bio-organic chemistry, synthetic organic chemistry, and in vitro and in vivo diagnostics to develop multiplex immunofluorescence technologies.

Helen Snyder, PhD

Director of Preclinical Development & Strategic Partnerships

Publications & Citations



Received her PhD in immunology from the University of Cambridge, UK, and trained as a postdoctoral fellow at Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California. Dr. Snyder has over 30 years’ experience in immunology research, reagent development, preclinical development of biotherapeutics, and business development of immunoassay and immunodiagnostic products.

Stephen J. Kron, MD, PhD


Publications & Citations

Dr. Kron received his MD, PhD in Cell Biology from Stanford University and is currently a professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology at The University of Chicago. Steve has published over a hundred papers and reviews, and is an inventor on multiple patents, several of which have been commercialized.

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