16 Finalist for the EIT Health Germany Headstart Awards 2019

EIT Health Germany Headstart Awards 2019

The finalists will pitch for the awards at SHIP - Ship for Health Innovation Pitches 

EIT Health’s extensive portfolio of support programmes for start-ups and young entrepreneurs from across Europe enables them to develop new products and services in healthcare. The EIT Health Headstart Awards with EUR 50 000 aims to support the winners in overcoming short-term hurdles and strengthening their business profile, thus realising next steps towards the market.

EIT Health Germany is proud to announce the finalists chosen to pitch at the upcoming SHIP – Ship for Health Innovation Pitches on 26 June 2019 in Heidelberg, Germany aboard the "Königin Silvia". The finalists will pitch their business ideas in front of a renowned jury, comprised  of industry representatives, business mentors, VCs, and EIT Health Partners – an event not to be missed!

The 16 nominees, at a glance:

  • Alberta (IT-Labs) is a software that digitises paper processes and links medical findings data with health insurance contracts and article data, to automatically create optimal care proposals. Alberta's target group are pharmacies, medical supply stores and homecare companies. The aim is to improve their processes in the care of chronically ill patients. The software continuously analyses patient data and makes suggestions to the user on how to improve individual treatments. In the digital process, the software networks all those involved in care, such as doctors, clinics, care organisations and health insurance companies. The tool is tailored directly to the sales representatives and thus saves valuable working time. 
  • AcryRad (ScintHealth) develops the first minimally invasive software-based curative therapy for spinal cancer. By using a novel fluid radioactive polymer, which solidifies promptly when injected, ScintHealth’s product AcryRad can be used for metastases and primary tumors in the spine. Since the radioactivity remains at the injection site, high local radiation doses can be delivered while side-effects are strongly reduced. Moreover, ScintHealth’s therapy can be performed in a single-session (vs. up to 40 sessions in the current setup) and at a lower cost. Additionally, reduction of patient scheduling issues and radioactive transport cost are achieved through on-demand, in-hospital preparation.
  • AUCTEQ Biosystems develops an expandable single-use bioreactor to increase the efficiency of biopharmaceutical production processes by reducing contamination risks, working capacity and disposal costs. In biopharmaceutical processes, drug-producing cells are cultured in up to 10 000 liter-sized bioreactors. To start such a bioreactor, a specific volume of cell culture is required. In order to gain this required volume, cells are transferred from milliliter sized bioreactors stepwise to bigger bioreactors. Until a volume of 20 liters is reached, the cell has to be transferred up to eight times. These manual transfer steps induce a high contamination risk, require high working capacities and produce a lot of plastic waste. Using AUCTEQ bioreactors, all manual transfer steps are reduced to one single step. In total at least 30% of the current process costs can be saved. 
  • BOOST Thyroid is the world's strongest community and solution for people with thyroid diseases. With lab test and symptoms tracking, a doctor report, and personalised scientific insights the free-to-use app helps deliver the best possible preventive health management for patients. The start-up transforms the current reactive management of the largest autoimmune condition, Hashimoto’s, into a preventive health management by empowering patients to take control of their health every day of their lives. The overall goal is to digitize doctor–patient interactions and improve shared decision making. For that, BOOST Thyroid combines peer-reviewed science on thyroid autoimmune conditions with data science, creating a valuable solution for patients
  • Biotx.ai has developed an AI specifically designed for the analysis of high-dimensional biomedical data. Biotx identifies complex patterns in biomedical data and brings them as predictive biomarkers for prevention to patients. While current biomarkers rely on single-gene or protein variants, Biotx’s Next-Generation Biomarkers are based on the complex interactions of multiple variants. They accurately predict disease status, allow for patient stratification and provide decision support in drug development and precision medicine. 
  • Earlysight, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the largest causes of blindness in industrialised countries. The diagnosis of AMD is usually made too late, when the patient already has some irreversible vision loss. The standard of care in ophthalmic imaging that is used to diagnose AMD is called optical coherence tomography (OCT). This technique is very efficient in showing large scale shape and deformation of the retina layers, but it is unable to obtain good images at the cellular level. Current diagnosis is thus made on large macroscopic defects that usually become visible only at an advanced and late stage of the diseases. Earlysight enables the monitoring of cellular-level details of the retina. We expect that by making yearly-routine examinations after a certain age, early signs of the retinal diseases will be detectable based on early microscopic alteration of the cellular structure and before permanent damage to the eyesight. 
  • Eisbach Bio is an innovative biotechnology start-up founded in 2019 as a spin-out of the Biomedical Center Munich. Eisbach Bio develops novel drugs that target the molecular vulnerabilities that arise in cancer. Some of the most devastating tumors develop so-called tumor suppressor genes. These tumors are incredibly difficult to target, since their genomes constantly evolve. Eisbach Bio can target these tumors head-on. Based on a unique screening and cellular platform, Eisbach Bio develops drugs that correct these disruptive changes within the tumor and can do so in an extremely specific manner that spares non-cancer cells.
  • Ghost – feel it has the aim to enhance the machine-human interaction. They developed a smart shirt and a haptic language that enables machines to send information via vibration patterns to the user, in order to communicate through a new channel. These are optimised to be intuitively perceived and learned by the human body, using the sense of touch. In the first use case, prosthesis will be equipped with sensors to capture pressure, bending and temperature data. These are translated by an AI-based algorithm into individual vibration patterns, which will be executed by the haptic shirt. The user will learn to match the sensor input with the felt pattern and can therefore feel the prosthesis. This technology can also create new senses such as radiation exposure or enhance products by using this neuroscience based, ultimate UX design. 
  • Idana is a software-as-a-service solution for intelligent digital anamnesis. Based on the reason for an individual consultation, Idana collects current complaints and disease history directly from the patient via adaptive questionnaires and then offers the physician an intelligent presentation of the data. The concise and EHR-integrated report allows them to diagnose with precision while saving time and reducing paperwork hassles. 
  • IRUBIS, Biopharmaceuticals are becoming increasingly important. At the same time, there is an urgent need to automate the production of these complex molecules in order to decrease costs. The decisive but missing component to achieve this is an affordable and accurate sensor to monitor bioreactors online and continuously. The innovation of IRUBIS is a single-use patent-pending sensor that is read out by a compact mid-infrared spectrometer. This system will allow for the first time an online real-time process control in single use bioreactors. 
  • Mecasa develops a matching platform for live-in caregiving: a place where seniors are being matched with caregivers based on individual character traits. At the core of the innovation is the mecasa matching algorithm. The algorithm aligns a caregiver’s personality, values, individual way of caring, and communication patterns with the respective senior’s social preferences in terms of caregiving style and interpersonal communication. The platform also facilitates the entire initiation process with automated document checks, and it establishes transparency through reviews, ratings and certification.
  • Mindcoa.ch has developed a powerful AI-driven cloud solution for mental health that selects a coach and gives a suggestion of therapy plan and interventions. Mental health topics range from coaching to therapy, therefore mindcoa.ch leverages their own platform to create solutions within defined market segments. Currently mindcoa.ch works on projects with pilot customers to turn these solutions into products, which are provided on a subscription basis. Scientific partners include the University of Vienna, the Medical University of Vienna and the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT). 
  • miRdetect develops a reliable and robust technology platform for the accurate diagnosis of testis cancer using blood samples. Diagnosis and treatment monitoring are driven by serum biomarkers. miRdetect offers a laboratory test kit for the reliable measurement of a newly discovered significantly more accurate serum biomarker. This leads to reduction of diagnostic operations, adjuvant chemotherapies, redundant cycles of chemotherapy, and CT examinations. The laboratory kit will contain all ready-to-use reagents needed for the measurement of the serum biomarker for testis cancer, using miRdetect's innovative measurement technique. 
  • MR Shim GmbH is an MRI technology and consulting company founded in 2018. MR Shim provides solutions for artifact-free MRI and improved diagnostic quality while paving the way for new MR possibilities. The main product is a plug-n-play add-on device that can be applied to any MRI device. This integrated solution improves the MRI image quality through real-time control of the magnetic field. MRI devices require a stable magnetic field to acquire clear images. Currently, 20% of all MR examinations have to be repeated. This incurs great costs for hospitals. In addition, poor quality MRI images lead to misdiagnosis and repeated treatments, which are costly and life-threatening. This add-on solution will stabilise the magnetic field in real-time, ensuring ultimate homogeneity for artifact-free images. 
  • RAMPmedical is a therapy decision support tool that helps physicians to find the right treatment for patients and to stay up to date with the latest research and drug information. This software brings transparency to treatment decisions and can fully evaluate the available options in order to select the best available therapy, based on the patient’s diagnosis and vital parameters. RAMPmedical analyses current treatment guidelines and medical research and presents the results in an accessible way so doctors can understand the information and avoid mistakes. 
  • The technology developed by VISSEIRO allows contactless measurement of vital signs, such as heart rate, heart rate variability and respiration of elderly people, in order to enable them to live independently as long as possible. The technology is used in a seat cushion for long-term health monitoring of seniors to have control on increasing risks of falls, stroke and diabetic coma. The integrated sensors deliver real-time health data to relatives, caregivers and physicians.