The ten start-ups that will improve our health

The ten business ideas that reach the second stage of Bioupper have been selected, sponsored by Novartis and Cariplo Foundation in support of young talents who want to create a start-up in the life sciences.


The ten business ideas that have reached the second phase of Bioupper have been selected, sponsored by Novartis and Cariplo Foundation in support of young talents who want to create a start-up in the life sciences. The initiative, in its second edition, is organised in collaboration with PoliHub, the start-up district & incubator of the Fondazione Politecnico di Milano, and with the scientific validation of Humanitas, a medical group and an advanced research facility internationally renowned.

The programme has collected 30% more applications (151) compared to 2015. Seventeen teams have been identified, teams that participated in the training week, a training path and a comparison with professionals in the industry, mentors and business angels. Yesterday in Milan was held the elevator pitch, a competition in which 17 teams from all over Italy submitted their projects to the jury.

The ten selected ideas in this stage are divided then in two of the areas of application provided by the competition: biotechnology geared to medical sciences (BTeam, Kyme, Postbiotica) and medical devices (Golgi, Holey, Newrosparks, Pd-Watch, Probiomedica, Watch-me and Wound Viewer).

Seventy per cent of the teams is characterised by the presence of women and the average age of start-uppers applicants is 30-35 years old. One of the 10 teams, Watch-me, was able to get into Bioupper thanks to the wild card that the programme offered to Hacking Health, the international movement that also in Italy promotes innovation, stimulating the co-creation between the world of research and medicine with the academic world.

The selected suggestions are accessing the ten-week acceleration programme (from January 26 to April 6), a custom-built path which aims to prepare and to make the “go-to-market” phase efficient, in other words the input of the project on the market. The programme will be balanced on each business idea, based on the life cycle of the offered product or service. Each project will be followed by a multidisciplinary team made by business angels, professionals in the industry and senior advisors, together with the advisory for the organisation of efficient business plans by PwC.

Once completed this last stage, each team will be expected to present the obtained results in the pitch session of April 12. The top three will receive a contribution of €50,000 each, which will allow them to take advantage of other aimed consultations, services and activities for the development of their own business plan in a more personalised and flexible way, in order to facilitate and make efficient the way of entry in the market.

10 selected ideas that will get access to the acceleration program

BTeam (Lazio) offers bromothymol, a new powerful antibacterial molecule, developed thanks to low cost and environmentally friendly production process. It has demonstrated to be an effective active ingredient for personal care and the disinfection of all surfaces.

Golgi (Emilia Romagna) is the first 3D printer which allows research centres to print biological three-dimensional tissues. They can be used for pharmacological, biological and cosmetic research, allowing the customisation of tests in vitro and to make their cost fall.

Holey (Lazio) is the first platform which allows hospitals to print 3D orthopaedic supports, ensuring a sharp reduction of costs compared to the commercial orthopaedic ones. They also reduce complications that the traditional plaster cast gives. So, patients are going to use customised, hypoallergenic and water-resistant devices.

Kyme (Campania) applies nanotechnologies to diagnostics in order to improve clinical contrast mediums, allowing an early and more accurate identification of diseases. Thanks to a superior effectiveness of the formulation, it is possible to increase the contrast of MRI images, to reduce the quantity of the injectable product and consequently its toxicity.

Newrosparks (Emilia Romagna) is the first system that helps people stop smoking through a device that can be worn. It raises the control ability over nicotine addiction.

PD-Watch (Basilicata) offers a continuous and non invasive monitoring of the tremor caused by Parkinson’s disease. It allows the expert to support an early diagnosis and to control the evolution of this disease better.

Postbiotica (Lombardy) develops new therapies based on bacteria derivatives (obtained thanks to an innovative fermentation method) in order to prevent and cure a vast range of inflammations: from allergic reactions to chronic diseases concerning the intestine and the urogenital apparatus.

Probiomedica (Tuscany) offer an innovative phototherapy for the cure of the infections caused by Helicobacter pylori. It has been studied for antibiotic resistant patients who represent 25% of the total population. The device is a pill that can be swallowed. Once in the gastric tract, it eradicates the bacterium through the radiation of light, avoiding the side effects of the current antibiotic therapy.

Watch me (Lombardy) is a device for the cure of children with learning difficulties that allows them to sustain rehabilitation at home involving actively their parents.

Wound viewer (Piedmont) is a 3D system for the monitoring and the automatic evaluation of cutaneous ulcers, that concern 2% of the global population. An artificial intelligence algorithm processes independently some data coming from a device and gives some objective guidelines back. These guidelines are necessary to support the expert in choosing the most suitable therapy. So, the use of Wound Viewer reduces considerably recovery times and consequently the times and costs of hospitalisation.

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