The MindUP technology incubator, a partnership between Pitango Venture Capital, the Rambam Health Care Campus, medical device company Medtronic, IBM, and the Impact First investment fund, has accepted its first company - Hemonitor.
Hemonitor measures blood flow in the main artery of patients arriving in intensive care. The company was founded by three partners with backgrounds in the medical device industry, who met during their medical engineering studies at Technion Israel Institute of Technology. The company's product uses ultrasound to directly measure blood flow in an artery.
Hemonitor cofounder and CEO Tom Mayblum says, "Our device is small, and is attached as a patch below the side of the neck. There is no need for the doctor or medical technician who looks for a special angle in a manual ultrasound. It does this automatically. Using a smart algorithm, it is able to identify the blood flow parameters by itself."
Hemonitor cofounder and CTO Samer Toume explains, "Today, in order to obtain an accurate estimate of the blood flow, you have to put a catheter into the main artery. This is usually done only for critical patients for whom the value of this test justifies its invasiveness, although every patient in intensive care really needs the test. Today, for example, when sepsis (an infection that causes a severe life-threatening immune reaction) is indicated, only 40% of patients are monitored in this way, and the proportion is even less for other indications."
According to Toume, attempts were made to replace the invasive catheter with less invasive technology, but all of them use indirect measurements; they do not measure the blood flow in the main artery. One example is technologies based on bio-impedance - the body's conductivity. "There are a number of such companies, including Israeli ones, and these products are being used, mainly in Europe, but with rather limited success," he says. "From our understanding of the problem and a check we did at various departments in hospitals, it appears that these tests haven't really caught on."
Mayblum: "Our product will make it possible to expand the number of monitored patients and lower costs, compared with catheters."
Hemonitor's product purports to be accurate enough to become a proper replacement for a catheter, while still costing less and being less invasive. The product won the Technion Biztech competition, after which it came into contact with the incubator. According to MindUP CEO Dan Shwarzman, one of Hemonitor's advantages is the possibility of working relatively early on a pilot with the Rambam Health Care Campus in order to verify that the product really meets the doctors' expectations.
Shwarzman says that MindUP will support digital medical ventures, with an emphasis on preventative medicine, monitoring and personalized medical treatment, and making medical services accessible in developing countries.
Published by Globes [online], Israel Business News - www.globes-online.com - on February 22, 2017
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