Established in August 2010 at the Natural and Medical Sciences Institute at the University of Tübingen (NMI) in Reutlingen, sense2care is an innovative medical technology company. The High-Tech Foundation Fund has now awarded sense2care a total of €500,000 for investing in the development of miniaturised systems to monitor critically ill patients in the operating theatre and in intensive care.
These blood gas analysis systems (BGAs), which utilise existing systems for invasive arterial blood pressure measurement (IDM) are to be developed using cutting-edge technologies. They will enhance patient and user safety in the operating theatre and in intensive care. This helps to minimise the frequency of complications during treatment and reduce treatment costs. The new BGA system is due to come onto the market in around five years. The development project behind this new technology is partly financed by the Leading-Edge Cluster Competition run by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and is a sub-project under the strategic lead topic of “health” covered by the MicroTEC Südwest cluster.
“In both the operating theatre and intensive care, critically ill patients are connected to a whole range of tube systems that monitor their condition,” explains Dr. Andreas Scheipers, Managing Director of sense2care GmbH. “One of the most important tube systems is the arterial blood pressure measurement system. This line is also used to take blood via syringes, i.e. by hand. The syringes are then placed in a bowl and taken to the lab for blood gas analysis, which of course takes some time. Only when the results are known, can medics decide on the best course of treatment. We believe that the condition of a critically ill patient must be monitored by a machine so that medics can respond much more quickly.”Established and based at the NMI in Reutlingen, sense2care develops prod-ucts to optimise the monitoring of critically ill patients. These products are designed to significantly reduce the need to take blood with conventional syringes. The cassette-based portable blood gas analysis system will comprise sensor elements and actuating elements – the drive technology – as well as a monitoring system that will enable it to automatically monitor critically ill patients in the operating theatre and in surgical intensive care. “The BGA Disposable Set is to be no larger than a mobile phone. We developed some of the miniaturisation technology for this system several years ago during other projects and this technology can now be taken even further,” explains Dr. Scheipers. The product is to bring nothing but benefits for patients. “As it is a sealed system, the risk of infection is reduced and, because it is a quasi-continuous system, medics can respond to results much quicker. Furthermore, our system costs the same to produce as conventional systems.” That was enough to impress High-Tech Foundation Fund Investment Manager Dr. Mehran Rafigh: “sense2care has identified an attractive niche market and is planning to move into this market with an innovative product.”sense2care is interested in working with major international companies that al-ready supply the healthcare market with products for anaesthetics, intensive care medicine and cardiology. Dr. Klaus Eichenberg, Managing Director of BioRegio STERN Management GmbH, which supported sense2care GmbH during its estab-lishment, is confident that the product will be a great success: “The founding team that we supported as part of our Science2Start programme has several years of ex-perience in patient monitoring. The market potential is huge and the miniaturisation of the system is a true innovation. The benefits for patients and users will be immense.”Dr. Scheipers predicts that “Just a few years after the market launch, we will be generating sales of several million euros. Our inclusion as a leading-edge cluster project of MicroTEC Südwest has been incredibly helpful. Highly skilled partners from the cluster region are supporting our development work.” Dr. Christoph-Michael Pfefferle, head of the Department of Economic Development and Property of Reutlingen city and Managing Director of Reutlinger Parkierung und Wirtschaft GmbH (RPW GmbH), who worked with the NMI and sense2care on the financing concept, is confident that the founders will be successful: “The first trials are to be held at selected hospitals in just four years, and in five years’ time the system should be available on the market.” Dr. Scheipers adds: “We are developing a brand new type of product and all the licensing criteria need to be met. This requires time and money, both of which we are now fortunate enough to have.”
Further information:sense2care GmbHDr. Andreas Scheipers (Managing Director)Markwiesenstrasse 5572770 ReutlingenGermanyPhone: +49-7121-51530-874mobile: +49-152-53708119E-Mail: andreas.scheipers[at]sense2care.eu