Four new BIO-X projects with a patient focus

25 April, 2016

Newer, smarter tools that improve patient outcome for the individual and that make healthcare more effective. That’s the theme of the 13th call within Uppsala BIO’s innovation programme BIO-X. Four companies, each with different individually-adapted diagnostic solutions, will now pursue the one-year program and share SEK 4 million.

Together with Sahlgrenska Science Park and Umeå Biotech Incubator, Uppsala BIO has selected the four companies destined to progress within the BIO-X call ‘New diagnostic solutions for disease monitoring’.

The purpose of the call is to support small life science companies in the early development of medical technologies that help healthcare professionals and patients to better follow-up treatment after injury or disease.

The companies come from Uppsala / Umeå, Stockholm / Gothenburg and Örebro and Stockholm individually. In addition to financial support, they also receive assistance with product development from the BIO-X programme’s experts in industry, healthcare and academia.

“Individualised care requires simple yet safe ways to measure and monitor the patient’s condition. We have selected four promising developments that we believe will have clear benefits for individual patients as well as for improving the efficiency of healthcare in general”, says Erik Forsberg, CEO of Uppsala BIO.

Follow-up after surgery
Two of the product concepts will reduce the risk of problems following the completion of surgery. Both involve monitoring patients’ health status at the individual level. But the solutions are very different.

Senzime has a new type of micro-dialysis probe, a measurement tool that can be attached to the surface of an organ after surgery to measure glucose and lactate levels, thereby warning of leakage, lack of oxygen or other complication. The probe will now be clinically tested with an on-line analyser for the early detection of complications after surgery.

RAPP – Recovery Assessment by Phone Points – also monitors a patient’s condition after surgery, in this case outpatient surgery (also known as day surgery) where patients themselves rate their perceived health in their own home via a mobile app programmed with a number of pre-developed and tested parameters. If the patient feels anxiety, the app can also be used to contact healthcare staff.

“Mobile solutions for monitoring day surgery treatments are a good example of how big the potential benefit for healthcare can be”, continues Erik Forsberg. Each year, over two million operations are carried out and more and more interventions will be considered for outpatient surgery in the future.

New measurement methods for diabetes
Diabetes is one of our most common diseases, and one that is increasing the most rapidly. Furthermore, its onset occurs at ever-younger ages, and since we now live longer, we will also be ill longer, which increases the risk of diabetes complications such as peripheral nerve injuries. That means that the sensations we feel can deteriorate, partly due to high blood sugar and partly due to vascular injuries occurring.

LARA Diagnostics has developed a new method to measure exactly this peripheral nerve damage in diabetics. It can, for example, help prevent ulcers in the feet, one of the most common causes of amputation in diabetics.

Ascilion is also developing a product that can be used by diabetics – a portable glucose meter with micro-needles. These shorter and thinner needles make blood sampling painless. The method can also be used on premature babies or in other situations where numerous painful samplings are a problem.

Biomarkers a hot area
Two of the chosen companies (Senzime and Ascilion) also have products in development that measure the levels of endogenous biochemical components, so-called biomarkers.

These measurements show how patients respond to treatment and thereby form a basis on which to individualise treatment – to increase or decrease therapeutic levels, for instance – based on the individual patient’s needs and condition.

In addition, data collected over time in a whole patient group can be used to determine and compare different healthcare measures in terms of medical outcomes and cost effectiveness.

“Biomarker measurement is a hot area. Thanks to its numerous patient registers, Sweden has very favourable conditions for creating companies with products that can succeed in the international market, which is the ultimate goal of Uppsala BIO”, concludes Erik Forsberg.

The four new BIO-X projects are:

Ascilion

Contact person: Pelle Rangsten, Ascilion AB, pelle.rangsten@ascilion.com
More information: http://www.ascilion.com/

LARA Diagnostics

Contact person: Louise Warme, LARA Diagnostics, louise.warme@laradiagnostics.se More information: http://www.laradiagnostics.se/

Senzime

Contact person: Lena Söderström, Senzime AB,lena.soderstrom@senzime.com

More information: http://www.senzime.com/sv/

RAPP – Recovery Assessment by Phone Points
Contact person: Ulrica Nilsson, RAPP AB/Örebro University, Ulrica.Nilsson@oru.se or Anna Ragén VD, anna.ragen@oru.se

More information: https://www.oru.se/forskning/forskningsprojekt/fp/?rdb=p1027

More about:

BIO-X, http://www.bio-x.nu/about-bio-x/bio-x-program/