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Germany’s biotechnology sector secured investment of EUR 2.4 billion in 2021 – the second-highest amount ever after the record first year of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 (EUR 3.1 billion). Funding in the sector has increased by 170 percent since 2019 according to EY. Last year, publicly trading biotech companies saw a 551 percent increase in revenue.
Berlin-based start-up Inne has raised EUR 9.4 million in funding. The femtech company, whose device allows women to examine and analyze saliva samples to monitor progesterone levels, secured new funding from the Dutch Borski Fund and Austrian VC Calm Storm Ventures as well as a number of business angels. The new round of funding brings the start-up’s funding to just under EUR 18 million to date.
A Marburg-based researcher has received the Future Insight Prize for his work on synthetic photosynthesis. Tobias Erb, Director and Head of Biochemistry and Synthetic Metabolism at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology, was awarded the prize in July at the Curious 2022 science conference in Darmstadt. The researcher’s “CETCH cycle” work was honored for the development of an artificial photosynthesis process that will hopefully be used in bioreactors to use CO2 sustainably as a valuable material or to extract it from the surrounding atmosphere.
In May, Swedish medtech multinational Getinge inaugurated its new experience center near Frankfurt airport. The new company facility is the first of its kind in Europe and Getinge’s third globally after the opening of centers in Tokyo (Japan) and New Jersey (USA). The Frankfurt experience center will act as a knowledge transfer hub with a showroom, two hybrid operating rooms, two intensive-care units, and a central sterile supply department as well as training facilities and offices.
A 17-year-old Oldenburg high-school graduate has invented gloves that allow blind people to enter text into their smartphones without having to use voice control systems. Emma Schiller’s “Wings” (Wireless Input Gloves) invention allows blind users to write messages –using a sensor-based system that assigns finger combinations to each Braille letter – that are then transmitted by Bluetooth to a smartphone. The idea first came to the Oldenburg native when she thought about developing a way of secretly answering WhatsApp messages in the classroom. Schiller now hopes to see her gloves developed for commercial release after being so warmly received by testers at the Ideas Expo in Hanover.
US-American group ResMed has acquired Leipzig e-health start-up mementor. Established in 2014, mementor developed and owns the somnio digital therapy solution for treating insomnia (the first and only permanently approved Digital Health Application in the field of reimbursable sleep medicine). The acquisition provides ResMed with a solid foundation for the development of ResMed’s own sleep medicine portfolio.
A US start-up company that has developed a predictive chemistry AI platform to speed up product development times is enjoying the support of the 5-HT Digital Hub Chemistry & Health as it seeks to expand its client base in Europe. Alchemy has developed a software-as-a-service platform that digitalizes chemistry lab work and processes the results using AI to accelerate innovation and product development times. According to the company, customer lab workflows can be digitalized in less than 90 days. Speaking to the hub, Alchemy CPO Marko Gacesa said that “We aim to use the 5-HT X-Linker to facilitate networking and meetings with leading chemical companies seeking faster time-to-market and optimized innovation.”
A Berlin start-up has developed what it calls the “world’s first mobile protective pod” designed to make face-to-face interaction in medical isolation scenarios possible. Sphaira Medical’s “Moby” pod improves medical isolation during pandemic situations as well as other medical scenarios where immunodeficiency requires strict isolation. The device is currently being tested in the pediatric cancer ward of Berlin’s Charité hospital as part of a joint study to determine the degree to which quality of life can be improved while securing effective protection against infection.