David M. Lyerly, Ph.D.
David Lyerly, Ph.D., is a founder, board member, and Chief Science Officer of TechLab Inc. — an innovative medical diagnostics company with research/development located in Blacksburg and manufacturing in Radford, Virginia. TechLab focuses on enteric diseases and the microbiology of the intestinal tract.
Lyerly and Dr. Tracy Wilkins founded the company in 1989, based on discoveries from their research on Clostridium difficile, the major cause of hospital-acquired diarrhea and colitis. Together they created TechLab Inc. with an emphasis on the microbiology of the intestinal tract and improved diagnostics for C. difficile. TechLab eventually grew to become a manufacturer and distributor of in vitro diagnostics for intestinal diseases. Lyerly left his academic position to help with the development and growth of TechLab, and has held several positions during his time with the company. TechLab now produces diagnostic products for numerous gastrointestinal diseases and conditions, including infections caused by C. difficile, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, and parasites. In addition, the company produces tests for the determination of intestinal inflammation caused by some infections as well as chronic noninfectious conditions such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
The company developed and patented QUIK CHEK technology specifically for the testing of fecal specimens. The technology allows for the delivery of highly accurate test results in less than 30 minutes. The ability to produce medical tests that improve the quality of outcomes and reduce costs has made TechLab Inc. a market leader in the field of medical diagnostics.
TechLab has teamed with William Petri, Head of Infectious Diseases at the University of Virginia’s Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health, for funding from the National Institutes of Health to develop diagnostics for intestinal diseases and a potential vaccine candidate against amoebiasis caused by Entamoeba histolytic.
Lyerly received his bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and his doctoral degree in Microbiology/Immunology from Wake Forest’s Bowman Gray School of Medicine. Lyerly completed his postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Tracy Wilkins at the Anaerobe Laboratory of Virginia Tech.