Meet the best-of-the-best business concepts from MedTech, BioTech and digital health from Germany, Austria and Switzerland in 2019.
The European Health Catapult is a yearly executed training and competition programme by EIT Health with the support of the Health Axis Europe (HAE) that boosts the development of top-notch European health start-ups through exposure to leading experts and international investors. A pre-selection amongst the applicants in the categories of MedTech, BioTech and digital health has been made now by each region, based on a common set of criteria. In Total 42 start-ups and young companies across these three categories will proceed to the Semi-Finals.
ARES Genetics is a digital diagnostics start-up that intends to revolutionize infectious disease diagnostics by artificial intelligence based DNA testing to improve patient outcomes at reduced costs. Microbial infections and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) have become a major global healthcare challenge causing more than 15 million casualties annually. The rapidly spreading AMR problem is largely fueled by the indiscriminate use of broadband antibiotics. This is mostly due to the absence of diagnostic information on the causative pathogens and associated resistance patterns at the time of prescription, as current diagnostic methods usually take 48 to 72 hours to deliver actionable information. Addressing this challenge, ARES makes use of high-resolution Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technology in combination with a proprietary pathogen and AMR reference database, ARESdb, for result interpretation. The company is currently developing an in-vitro diagnostic (IVD) solution, the Universal Pathogenome Assay (ARESupa) to facilitate rapid molecular diagnosis and quantitative drug response prediction for severe infections. www.ares-genetics.com
Portabiles Health Care Technologies: In Parkinson’s disease, reduced ability to walk is the most restricting symptom, concerning worldwide 7 million patients. More than 60% of Parkinson’s patients suffer from cyclic changes – switching from inability to move to uncontrollable movements. These motor fluctuations are complex to treat, resulting in frequent hospitalization when poorly cared for and causing direct costs of 6 billion € in industrial nations with 2.5 million Parkinson’s patients. Portabiles Health Care Technologies developed Mobile GaitLab, a medical gait analysis for better diagnosis and therapy of Parkinson’s patients. Mobile GaitLab consists of sensors integrated into orthopedic shoes, meant to be continuously worn by patients at home, combined with a specially developed app for self-assessment. It is used within a personalized care concept for clinical decision support. Physician and supporting Tele-Nurse receive a daily report about timing and severity of the motor fluctuations and the self-assessment. System and algorithms are validated by more than 2.000 clinically stratified gait analyses. www.portabiles-hct.de
munevo DRIVE is a unique wheelchair control system that allows users to control their wheelchair by moving their head. Munevo intends to become an everyday assistant who helps those affected to lead a more self-determined life. Diseases such as multiple sclerosis or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) as well as injuries to the spinal cord (paraplegia) can severely restrict a person’s freedom of movement and associated independence. As a result, those affected are often dependent on the help of other people or on uncomfortable steering systems. The smart glass application munevo DRIVE uses the sensors built into smart glasses to translate head movements into control signals. These signals are then transmitted to the wheelchair’s control unit via the munevo DRIVE adapter. This enables munevo DRIVE to control the wheelchair hands-free. By using bluetooth technology, it is possible to interact with many other devices. www.munevo.com
MukoCell GmbH, a pharmaceutical company based in Germany has developed an innovative and gentle method for the minimally invasive surgical repair of urethral strictures. Urethral stricture, as customer pain point, is a common disease and an unmet medical need with about 92,000 cases p.a. in Europe and about 835,000 cases p.a. worldwide. The global sales potential for MukoCell® in the indication urethral stricture is estimated to be a billion € market. The tissue-engineered transplant MukoCell, intends to be the new state-of-the-art standard treatment for urethral stricture, resulting in high success rates, no side-effects and a high quality of life for the patient. MukoCell GmbH possesses a broad IP protection and as result of the successful treatment of more than 200 patients to date, the company has a veritable lead time of several years in which no competing product could reasonably come to the market. www.mukocell.com
PerioTrap develops an innovative anti-infective drug for the curative treatment of periodontitis, an inflammatory gum disease caused by specific bacteria. Although this is a widespread indication associated with a range of comorbidities currently concerning around 30% of the global population, there is no effective treatment on the market yet.. Besides the potential development of antimicrobial resistances, the current treatment also results in the destruction of the protective biofilm which usually functions as a natural protective layer. PerioTrap develops locally applied small molecule drugs that address a new target, which is only present within the pathogenic bacteria, but will not affect commensals. Thus, pathogens within the biological flora of the dental pocket will be selectively removed without affecting the protective biofilm. Furthermore, a local long-term release of our formulation will maintain its physiological function by preventing a pathogenic recolonization of the dental pockets which typically causes the reoccurrence of periodontitis. Accordingly, PerioTrap aims to eradicate the root of the disease and to ultimately release patients from their continuous burden.