InnoStars, Scandinavia, Education, Innovation, 2018

Impressions on Nordic Life Science Days 2018

16th August 2019

An opportunity to network with partners and SMEs from the EIT Health community

The Nordic Life Science Days was a great opportunity to network with partners and SMEs from the EIT Health community and reckon EIT Health’s positioning statement: by collaborating across borders, we deliver solutions to enable European citizens to live longer and healthier lives. It has been an eventful week at the annual Nordic Life Science Days, where more than 1200 delegates – investors, SMEs, research communities, government and regulatory bodies and service providers – joined.

Among the partners and start-ups from the EIT Health community we met:

  • Ilya Pharma, an Uppsala based company that develops the next-generation biological drugs for treating wounds in skin and mucosa, presented at one of the crowded NLSDays pitch sessions. Ilya Pharma announced that it has just raised €3 million in a new targeted share issue. The funds will facilitate continued growth and take the company through the first clinical study and planning of the upcoming Phase II study of its most promising drug candidate, ILP-100, for faster wound healing. Ilya Pharma received its first EU funding from EIT Health in 2016. The EIT Health community is proud to have been an early investor!


  • Gedea Biotech, a company from Region Skåne developing an antibiotic-free and safe treatment of vaginal infections, won the Start-up Challenge @ NLSDays2018. A great step towards the European Health Catapult finals! Thus, Gedea Biotech also is among the biotech Semi-finalist of the European Health Catapult – a training and competition platform, that awards the best-of-the-best business concepts from medtech, biotech and digital health across Europe. Gedea will be competing in the biotech category in Leuven, Belgium next week on 24-26 September, at one of the several opportunities within EHC to pitch in front of experts and international investors. “We are looking forward to it”, says Annette Säfholm, CEO. “As we plan to have our product launched in 2019, European investor exposure, partnering and mentoring opportunities are a perfect timing for us.” Good Luck Gedea Biotech!


  • Medituner was also among the selected companies with Eric Alhanko pitching at the Start-up Challenge @NLSDays2018. MediTuner’s first product – AsthmaTuner, a digital self-management solution to improve care for asthma patients, was released on the Swedish market earlier this spring and the Swedish company is now in an expanding phase. Medituner has participated in three EIT Health Accelerator programmes: HeadStart/Proof of concept (EIT Health Call Commercialisation Funding), Business Plan Aggregator (Finalist participating in the Barcelona EIT Health summit 2016) and Product Market Fit (2017). Medituner will present the positive results of its clinical study later in September at the European Respiratory Society International Congress 2018 in Paris. Bravo!

Among the numerous and interesting sessions that took place this year at NLSDays, some stod out more than others. Take a glimpse of some of them below:

  • “It all starts with data” said Dr. Shiva Kumar, VP & Chief Strategy officer IBM Watson in his inspiring open plenary talk.

That is why EIT Health has organised the Think Tank Round Tables on Big Data this year, with one of the outcomes being the Scandinavian focus programme for 2019 “Registers and BioBanks in Transition.”

  • “We need to focus more on Prevention and Health” and “to speed up implementation of innovation” said Jenny Nordborg, Director & National Coordinator Life Sciences at the Swedish Government offices.

Indeed! EIT Health’s mission is to promote healthy living and active ageing and improve healthcare through education, business creation and acceleration of innovation.

  • Some of the major investment criteria for SMEs mentioned during the Life Science financing super session were differentiation, evidence, scaling, cash is king.

Check out the Accelerator programme from EIT Health that can support SMEs in all development stages.

  • Some take aways from the super session on precision medicine were the need of new ways of collaboration in healthcare, adjusting hospital structure and care processes and the need of education to develop competencies for healthcare staff.

At EIT Health we educate in citizen engagement activities, innovation programmes and skill development trainings, we facilitate innovation in programmes and we collaborate -we connect all healthcare players across European borders, making sure to include all sides of the knowledge triangle so that innovation can happen.

Thank you for good networking and great inspiration. We look forward to NLSDays2019, where EIT Health plans to be more actively involved. Stay tuned!

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