2nd June 2020
96 will receive mentoring and financial support to accelerate the development of promising health solutions
Ninety-six start-ups from across Europe have been selected to take part in the annual EIT Health Headstart programme. The selected start-ups will have access to mentoring and business support, and financial support of up to €50,000, and will make valuable contacts within the health innovation ecosystem via EIT Health’s vast network.
The EIT Health Headstart programme provides emerging companies with mentorship and funding opportunities to accelerate the development and time-to-market of innovative products and services to improve the lives of European patients and citizens. Mentored by EIT Health’s regional teams of Business Creation Managers, the programme offers support to the companies as they navigate the steps required to bring their solution to market including, crucially, verification of the clinical, patient or system need for the product or service. They are also supported with skills development and contacts so that they can go on to attract further financial support from private investors.
Addressing a number of significant health challenges facing European’s today, the start-ups will develop products and services in areas such as cancer, geriatrics, ophthalmology, wound care, women’s health, genetic and neurological conditions, cardiology and digital tools to assist healthcare services in the management of patients as well as research and development. New for this year, EIT Health expanded the scope of Headstart to assist in the immediate need for solutions to combat COVID-19, and has selected 21 start-ups that will develop products and services that will help Europe to contain, treat and manage the disease.
“We are thrilled to support the start-ups selected this year through the Headstart programme. Each one presented an incredibly strong proposition for the development of solutions to improve the lives of European patients and citizens in areas of high unmet need. I am also proud to see the speed at which our applicants were able to respond to our call for COVID-19 solutions – it is truly a demonstration of the agility and astuteness that lies within the start-up community we have here in Europe.” said Dr. Kurt Höller, Director of Business Creation at EIT Health.
The selected start-ups:
Allelica S.r.l. (Italy): uses genomic software to identify people who will develop the highest severity of COVID-19 clinical manifestation. Allelica is the developer of the first software as a service to perform prediction analysis of complex diseases using genomics and clinical data.
AquAffirm Limited (UK): develops a user-friendly web-based tool employing sophisticated models for analysing both epidemic trajectory and restriction management of COVID-19. The solution will allow even small businesses and developing countries to access advanced prediction models.
Arthex Biotech S.L. (Spain): develops antisense RNA treatments for genetic diseases. The first product in the pipeline is ARTHEx-DM1, which targets Muscular Dystrophy Type 1, an orphan disease.
Asylia Diagnostics BV (Belgium): develops diagnostics assays for melanoma and lung cancer to detect hyper progression – a rapid disease progression that occurs in some cancer patients following immunotherapeutic treatment. Asylia’s assays are developed with the goal of making immunotherapy safer for patients.
ATRIA Tecnologia y Psicologia S.L. (Spain): makes psychological treatments available to all, remotely, with evidence-based treatments that have proven effective and translates them into self-guided programmes with psychoeducational content, tools to practice and, Serena, a chatbot that accompanies the user throughout the process.
Aumio UG (Germany): promotes a digital mental health coach for children – a psychoeducative and mindfulness-based self-help training in one playful app.
Bac3Gel (Portugal): develops a model of human mucus to transform microbiology and the way bacteria-modulating drugs are discovered. The technology provides bacteria a 3D substrate, making it possible to generate infections in vitro to discover and test the efficacy of new antibiotics in a high throughput and reproducible manner.
BeneTalk LTD (UK): introduces an AI e-wearable speech tracker. This is AI-enhanced speech therapist tracks the user’s speech patterns throughout the day and provides real-time feedback to help the user transform their communication.
Bioadhesive Ophthalmics SAS (France): transforms ophthalmology by improving the efficacy and potency of eye medications. Their innovation is a Mucoadhesive Ocular Hydrogel Insert that releases drugs over a one-week period, enhancing the impact of treatment.
BioXplor, LTD. (Ireland): launches an open-access COVID-19 research and development platform for rapid literature-based knowledge discovery and AI/data-driven drug discovery solutions. The secure, federated and fully interoperable platform will combine public and private data.
BOCAhealthcare GmbH (Germany): develops new ideas in the field of digital healthcare with specific regards to the management of the human body fluids – improving the patient’s journey from hospital to home and providing doctors with a solution that can help in their everyday clinical decisions.
BOOKING CLINIC RESEARCH P.C. (Greece): connects patients with doctors and clinics for online consultation and booking of treatments through a smart, online platform. The company is cooperating free of charge with the global humanitarian organisation Medecins du Monde, to offer online medical consultations to patients seeking advice on COVID-19.
Byteflies NV (Belgium): allows remote, continuous and user-friendly monitoring of COVID-19 key indicators, including cardiac and respiratory parameters, while providing medical insights to clinicians.
Climedo Health GmbH (Germany): gives researchers a holistic, safe, and affordable way of capturing and monitoring COVID-19-related clinical data. Climedo’s eQuarantineDiary allows for consolidation of remotely collected patient data.
C-mo Medical Solutions (Portugal): answers an unmet clinical need with a wearable cough-monitoring device that provides a comprehensive assessment of a patient’s distinctive cough patterns. It aims to facilitate and expedite the diagnosis of the cough’s underlying disease, allowing the prescription of customised and accurate therapies and treatments.
Corti ApS (Denmark): provides AI-powered solutions for the COVID-19 pandemic, using an analysis of more than 100,000 patient interviews to create platforms for areas such as home assessment and monitoring, pandemic mapping and triage assistance.
CrannMed Limited (Ireland): aims to eliminate chronic pain, restore mobility and stop disease progression for patients with knee osteoarthritis. Their solution provides an alternative treatment for this debilitating disease through development of bioresorbable embolic particles and a balloon occlusion microcatheter.
DeepSpin UG (Germany): works to make magnetic resonance imaging universally accessible through proprietary technology that enables a 100x reduction in system cost.
Dermavision Solutions S.L (Spain): provides a new non-invasive medical device able to detect melanoma in early stages. It takes standardised high-quality images from patients using deep learning and AI and completes the scan in five minutes, without human intervention.
Documental Ltd (Estonia): transforms current mental healthcare with remote services and decision support tools to be more responsive to population needs for better access to care and address special mental needs during the pandemic.
DOTLUMEN S.R.L (Romania): builds glasses that use advanced robotics technology to help the visually impaired to navigate. The company aims to match and improve on the benefits of a guide dog.
Drivesec srl (Italy): provides a wearable that supports the enforcement of “social distancing” safety rules for the COVID-19 pandemic. Drivesec develops technology to monitor working conditions, safety and the status of the worker.
Droplite Technologies, S.L. (Spain): introduces a novel in-vitro smart diagnostics device, that delivers accurate test results in 10 minutes for the detection and quantification of specific diseases and health conditions. The innovation is based on an immunoassay biochemical testing technique.
EPCON bvba (Belgium): quantifies risks of COVID-19 transmission at the sub-national and population level, and generates timely, actionable, and spatially aware output for stakeholders in the programme, including the patients.
EVERSENS S.L. (Spain): provides Evernoa, a point-of-care, portable, FeNO detection device that facilitates the diagnosis and monitoring of pulmonary inflammation related to asthma as well as COVID-19.
Evora Biosciences SAS (France): develops a breakthrough cell-free version of regenerative cell therapies to treat complex digestive fistula. The innovation leverages the regenerative properties of extracellular vesicles (exosomes).
Foren Project S.L. (Spain): offers a therapeutic tool for the treatment of motor injuries in stroke patients using the technologies of virtual reality, electrostimulation and AI. Foren’s objective is to disrupt the stroke rehabilitation landscape by offering a unique multimodal product designed to accelerate recovery periods and reduce healthcare costs.
Friends Media Group Katarzyna Zimoląg (Poland): supports the family in the coordinated medical, social, and psychological care of a palliative patient. The easy-to-use mobile app provides real-time patient information and handy tools for care-givers to reduce stress, avoid errors, and free up more time to deliver care.
GRAPHEAL (France): focuses on a wearable technology to monitor healing and improve the treatment of chronic wounds that require long-term care. Combining novel electronic materials, embedded wireless electronics, software data analysis and medical cloud technologies, the solution aims to avoid amputations.
Hephai (France): develops an application that educates patients – correcting their movements in real time while they film themselves with their smartphone, tablet or laptop – to help ensure that they use inhaled medications with the maximum effect.
Hi Rasmus Aps (Denmark): democratises autism treatment for children, regardless of their location, with a digital platform that provides access to the leading treatment programmes and specialists wherever the child is.
Hygiene Audits Ltd (Ireland): offers a software solution for infection prevention and control in nursing homes by providing automated workflows for care staff, tracking and tracing infection risks, and helping reduce healthcare-associated infections.
ICU Medical Technologies S.L.U. (Spain): offers KronoSafe®, designed to improve temporary cardiac stimulation by reducing the complications associated with this procedure, which is performed more than 200,000 times a year.
IDOVEN 1903 (Spain): offers a cloud-based software using AI for electrocardiograms analysis and a wearable. The system makes it possible to detect and classify arrhythmias at a cardiologist level, remotely and in real time.
IMMAGINA BioTechnology S.r.l. (Italy): produces research tools for gene expression analysis at the ribosomal level. Their CircAID-p-seq technology provides everything from a research-use-only kit for gene expression studies to a new lab developed test for in-vitro diagnostic companies working on breast and prostate cancer.
Indicate Solutions S.L. (Spain): develops a rapid, cheap and reliable blood diagnostic device for diagnosis of cancer and infectious disease that can be used whenever and wherever there is a need. The solution aims to allow doctors to make quick treatment decisions and improve patients’ lives.
Inicare (The Netherlands): combines smart algorithms and mobile connectivity in a wireless, system for continuous monitoring of vital signs, intended for use in low acuity wards in hospitals. It helps to reduce hospital staff workload and prevents potential (re) admission of patients to intensive care units.
Innitius S.L. (Spain): differentiates true preterm labour from false preterm labour events at the point of care, using a patented intravaginal probe to transmit torsional waves for directly measuring the consistency of the cervical tissue.
Innofuse BV (The Netherlands): develops an innovative, easy-to-use and patented intravenous infusion set for newborns that offers stability and immediacy of drug administration. The system will lead to safer drug administration and a reduction of brain damage cases in pre-term infants.
Inocells BV (The Netherlands): provides a unique stem cell therapy and banking system for hospitals and IVF centres to rejuvenate the ovary of infertile patients and increase their chances of achieving pregnancy.
Intrepida LLC (Germany): provides Ancora.ai, an AI-powered online platform that helps patients and health volunteers search for and connect with clinical trials for COVID-19 diagnostics, treatments and vaccines.
Invivopower AB (Sweden): provides a transcutaneous energy link that can be created at the body surface without breaking the bacterial skin barrier, making it possible to transfer energy into the body with almost the same energy efficiency as a percutaneous cable, but without the cable´s risk of infection. It has applications for ventricular assistive devices and total artificial hearts.
iuvando Health GmbH (Germany): empowers patients with different types of cancer to unlock new treatment pathways by providing guidance in searching for clinical trials in precision oncology.
Kintsugi Therapeutics (Spain): owns a platform technology for designing new molecules, as well as a chemical library of Casp2 inhibitors, for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
KroniKare Limited (UK): uses a hand-held device and an AI-based system for assessment and management of chronic wounds. The evidence-based solution automates the process of assessing and caring for the wound.
Kyme NanoImaging srl (Italy): improves Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) with injectable medical products that combine biomaterials with clinically used contrast agents. Produced with a patented nanotechnology platform, these products increase contrast capability to make greater anatomical details visible.
Latch Medical Ltd. (Ireland): eases catheter use through the development of Cath Latch, a patented microneedle technology that allows robust, adhesive-free and non-invasive catheter securement to the skin. The solution allows the device to stay in situ for extended periods of time with a low risk of complications.
Let Leg ApS (Denmark): creates science-based activities that promote mental, physical, and social health among sedentary workers. Pleaz is a digital platform that helps companies implement fun and healthy active breaks during a workday – especially in meetings.
Libheros (France): allows patients and healthcare professionals to organise and monitor both digital and physical home care. Co-founded by a former nurse, Libheros takes a specific approach to serving patients, offering dedicated in-house care managers and access to a community of more than 12,000 healthcare professionals for home care.
Lifebloom (France): provides a sustainable model of autonomous walking and augmented rehabilitation that puts patients in charge of their lives. The solution is designed to replace the current model of wheelchair placement, dependency and frailty due to inactivity and saturated care.
Longenesis SIA (Latvia): supports COVID-19 research with a technological toolkit that assists with legal challenges of patient access – the tool is GDPR, HIPA, etc. compliant, and offers the ability to safely showcase patient data to clinical investigators and researchers without releasing personal information.
Lorton Investments Sp. z o.o. (Poland): produces SenceBand, a wearable for electrocardiography (ECG) sensor using one wrist only. It is compliant to the International Standards of Measurement, Physiological Interpretation, and Clinical Use to constantly track the state of the autonomic nervous system.
MiWEndo Solutions S.L (Spain): produces MiWEndo, an accessory that attaches to the tip of a colonoscope to improve colonoscopy detection using microwaves. MiWEndo increases the field of view to 360 degrees and automates the detection of polyps by emitting an alarm to warn the endoscopist. It also allows the endoscopist to differentiate malignant and benign polyps.
Moligo Technologies AB (Sweden): uses a proprietary enzymes-based approach to produce DNA strands with unprecedented purity, length and scale, which is essential to bringing gene editing, DNA therapeutics and diagnostics to a clinical and industrial level.
myCharlotte (France): provides cancer patients with remote supportive care – including physical activity such as yoga and pilates, as well as mind-based exercises including meditation and breathing techniques. Their Bulle app supports people at home by improving quality of life during and after cancer treatment. Direct support is possible through a specific video-conferencing tool.
Mysurable LTD (Italy): produces mioTest®, the first comprehensive, portable and automated system to evaluate muscular performance in order to diagnose sarcopenia, a syndrome characterised by the loss of muscle mass. Along with diagnosing the problem, the solution can suggest personalised treatment options.
NaviBlind IVS (Denmark): enables blind and visually disabled people to easily walk from A to B on their own without the aid of a sighted instructor. The service is delivered through a GPS accessory and a mobile app, which guides the user to their destination.
neoMimix (Ireland): allows for natural sperm selection for assisted human reproduction. The solution provides the most natural, ex-vivo, biomimicry of the female reproductive tract for sorting and selecting the highest grade, lowest DNA fragmented sperm in a simple and fully traceable process.
Nia Health GmbH (Germany): offers atopic dermatitis patients digital support with an app powered by AI. Affected persons can immediately receive personalized content and functions that help to improve their health.
Ninevah Therapeutics S.L. (Spain): brings forward a first-in-class gene therapy able to treat all patients with genetic nephrotic syndrome (NS).
Novus Diagnostics LTD (Ireland): develops SepTec, a next generation sepsis detection device that is making significant strides towards addressing the vital need for rapid, accurate sepsis diagnosis. SepTec’s sample-to-answer diagnostic device is designed to detect bacteraemia in whole blood in under 15 minutes, eliminating the need for lengthy sample enrichment.
NUA Surgical (Ireland): develops a specialised surgical retractor to make C-Sections a safer and superior surgery. SteriCISION is designed to improve ergonomics of the surgery, reduce resources required and reduce the risk of surgical site infection.
Nurea (France): develops an image analysis software for diagnostic and follow-up of patients with vascular diseases. Used by vascular clinicians, Nurea’s software automatises full body scan analysis, providing reliable and relevant decision indicators to prevent cardiovascular accidents.
Nursebeam OÜ (Estonia): offers a phone-based medical chatbot that provides travellers with instant access to healthcare anywhere.
Omni (France): designs a system that makes it possible to ride any electric scooter in a manual wheelchair, offering wheelchair users the opportunity to enjoy the ease of mobility provided by electric scooters.
ORIXHA (France): develops LV4C, liquid ventilation for cooling, to rapidly reduce the body temperature of a cardiac arrest patient and improve their chances of survival. Their patented solution for ultra-rapid therapeutic hypothermia induction can provide life-saving protection for the brain and heart after cardiac arrest.
Oxolife S.L. (Spain): develops a first-in-class pharmacological product, OXO-001, to increase embryo implantation to fulfil an unmet need in female fertility treatment. Through a direct effect on the endometrium, OXO-001 could allow pregnancy many infertile women who currently lack optimal fertility treatment.
Paragit Solutions (Denmark): offers a wearable companion diagnostic tool for Parkinson’s disease. Paragit Sleeve can passively and non-invasively gather crucial data regarding the patient’s cardinal symptom in the comfort of their own home. It can produce an objective assessment that helps neurologists provide a holistic picture of the patient’s everyday life.
Pheal (France): aims to improve the quality of life of chronic disease patients while saving on healthcare cost by using a new healthcare monitoring solution that can be used at home. The system uses new technologies and is based on prevention and a strong partnership between the healthcare team and the patient, who is empowered to take the lead in their own care.
Praxis Medical Devices Ltd (Ireland): develops CapBuster, a revolutionary new medical device designed to safely and reliably penetrate completely blocked arteries. The solution incorporates engineering intelligence at a nano level that has never been used before in angioplasty. It comprises a guidewire and balloon catheter combination device, with the addition of unique patented screw-thread technology.
Predictheon Medical S.L. (Spain): aims to increase patient safety through a predictive monitoring software by allowing clinicians to get ahead of adverse events related to anaesthesia and sedation, avoiding repercussions for patients, doctors and healthcare centres.
PrOxi Biotech ApS (Denmark): develops next generation vaccines for multi-resistant bacteria. Their novel BACTOVAC platform technology aims to overcome the main barriers to traditional vaccine development technology, enabling market entrance of urgently needed vaccines targeting antimicrobial resistant bacteria.
Qubit Pharmaceuticals SAS (France): offers a pre-clinical development laboratory using computer simulation that leverages the latest software and hardware advances in quantum computing to move from approximate calculations to accurate real-time calculations.
RAMPmedical (Germany): offers an evidence and AI-based decision-support software for therapy that brings scientific research results into medical practice to assist clinicians and improve patient quality of life.
Resitu AB (Sweden): offers a revolutionary approach to tumour biopsies by combining biopsy with tumour removal, without surgical intervention. The solution aims to save precious healthcare time and cost and allow for faster patient recovery.
Robeauté (France): develops a submillimetric microrobot that moves in the brain in curved lines with submillimetric precision, allowing access to many areas of the brain in multiple locations. The microrobot can gather data and deliver cargos (such as micro-electrodes, or drugs) paving the way for more efficient emerging neurotherapies.
ScinthHealth GmbH (Germany): works on minimising the spread of contagious diseases in healthcare facilities, using smart, ultraviolet C systems that reliably and quickly inactivate germs, including the coronavirus, thereby preventing harm to humans.
Serenno Medical (Israel): uses a robust, hands-free, low cost and non-invasive device to provide an accurate measure of the ongoing urine output of hospitalised patients. The novel approach can predict and identify life-threatening complications that are common in the intensive care unit, such as acute kidney injury.
SideROS (France): bridges innovative research on iron-targeting chemical compounds and drug candidate discoveries to target persister cancer cells. Their innovative approach uses small molecules that show the potential to target various types of cancer, thereby revolutionising treatment.
Sineko Global Kft. (Hungary): helps radiologists with GRAID software, an AI-supported structured reporting system for cross-border teleradiology. The solution allows for fast, easy sharing of radiology results and thereby aims to decrease reporting time and improve diagnostic quality.
Sision Medical (Ireland): uses the latest advances in bioengineering and artificial intelligence to enable an entirely new treatment approach for chronic inflammatory endocrine condition. Sision Medical’s platform offers a personalised treatment using a wearable medical device that delivers targeted electrical pulses to normalise the body’s own biological actions.
SmartCatch (France): develops portable and connected devices based on micro/nanotechnologies to capture clinically relevant samples of cancer cells. Targeting the pharmaceutical industry and hospitals, the solution will help to accelerate and improve the characterisation of cancer, to allow for personalised treatment of individual patients.
SurgAR (France): produces Surgical Augmented Reality, a real-time augmented reality software based on artificial intelligence and computer vision to make an organ’s inner anatomy visible, allowing for more effective and efficient surgical procedures.
SurgiQ s.r.l. (Italy): provides Q-planner, an automated, artificial intelligence-based tool that aims to save hospitals time and reach a more efficient allocation of their assets. The tool aims to support hospitals in achieving improved return on investment from available assets while enhancing their ability to deliver the best healthcare to patients.
SYNCSENSE ApS (Denmark): develops the next generation of virtual reality therapeutics. Exercises guided with virtual reality enable caregivers to deliver personalised treatment and empower patients to take control of their age- and inactivity-related diseases.
SYNDIAG S.R.L. (Italy): empowers medical doctors to perform early diagnosis of ovarian cancer during ultrasound medical imaging with AI-based software. OvAI is a cloud platform where gynaecologists can find interpretation support, request second opinions remotely and enjoy real-time access to high quality databases for continuous learning.
Time is Brain S.L. (Spain): develops a patented technology based on a novel biomarker to improve functional outcomes for acute ischemic stroke patients undergoing a mechanical thrombectomy. The device provides information that can be of significant value to the clinician in assessing the patient before, during and after the clinical intervention.
uFraction8 Ltd (UK): develops microfluidics-based filtration systems that help bio-manufacturers who use biological cells in their production to harvest cells with a sustainable and scalable system that outperforms conventional filters and centrifuges.
UPSTREAM OUTCOMES LIMITED (UK): employs AI combined with a mobile and analytics platform to provide innovative technologies and new service approaches that support an “upstream” approach, encouraging better preventive care.
VineHealth Digital Limited (UK): allows cancer patients to better track, manage and understand their care with an app. The solution applies machine learning and behavioural science to drive behavioural change. It is designed to promote optimised care delivery and increased survival, and gather rich patient data that informs more patient-focussed healthcare and academic research.
Virtonomy GmbH (Germany): creates the first web platform for use by medical device developers that utilises virtual patients for data-driven clinical trials, thereby shortening the time-to-market for life-essential medical devices, accelerating medical innovation, and significantly reducing costs.
VulCur MedTech ApS (Denmark): develops an advanced laser technology for killing bacteria in chronic wounds to prevent amputations in elderly and diabetic patients.
WARD 247 (Denmark): develops 24/7 monitoring of hospitalised patients with advanced AI interpretation of vital signs, allowing medical professionals to intervene earlier, and prevent unexpected critical complications.
waytoB (Ireland): offers a smart tech solution that enables people with special educational needs to navigate outdoor environments safely by themselves. The solution provides intuitive, icon-based directions on a wearable device, and offers peace of mind to loved ones, who can monitor the user’s location, heart rate and battery life.
Wolk BV (The Netherlands): produces a lightweight, wearable hip airbag that combines state-of-the-art sensors and fall detection algorithms to protect elderly people from hip fractures when falling. Like the airbag in a car, it inflates to prevent hard impact when the wearer falls.
Zoundream AG (Switzerland): uses deep learning and sound recognition to translate baby cries sounds into their needs, emotions and physical status.