#45 🍩 What the Health - Clinic in a box, zombie drugs, psychedelics & funding pops
Your health tech & innovation TL;DR roundup
Happy Monday friends,
In case you missed it (and of course most important news) - we have our EOY Shindigs soon (yahoo)!
A chance for the WTH & Health innovation community to come together for some bevs, bants & good times 🥳 And celebrate the year thats been.
We sold out in Melbourne and Sydney pretty darn quick but just dropped a final 10 tickets to each. So if you’re keen - jump on ze links below!
📆 Thurs, Nov 30th
⏰ 5.30 pm onwards
📍Surry Hills (on rego)
📆 Thurs, Dec 7th
📍 Melbourne CBD (on rego)
🥂 Ft Bevs and a few bites
📆 Tues, Nov 28th
📍 Fortitude Valley (on rego)
Know someone who might like to come? Send it their way! 💌
The more the merrier
New here? Welcome friend 😊 Want to receive the latest drops with our crew of >6250 health innovation loving legends ? Join us!
Now, onto the good stuff…
(PS - today is a little long, but promise its worth it)
💜 Brought to you with… Matt the Mindful Myo
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If you've been struggling with long term pain - or simply want to level up your life - you can apply for the next intake. With a combination of in-person and online sessions, backed by on-demand video coaching, expect a level of support normally reserved for professional athletes.
Curious? Check out the link before or reach out to Matt for a chat!
🍄 Psychae Therapeutics scored $4.5m from UniMelb to develop botanical and psychedelic mental health therapies
🤖 Andromeda Robotics raised $1m to help provide the elderly with robot companions
🖥️ Splose, an allied health and NDIS management platform, secured $1.5m in 24 hours of what it hopes to be a $3m Series A
📱 Coach Welly, a QLD based AI wellness platform, closed a $4.25m pre-seed
❄️ The Snow Medical Research Foundation will donate $100m to immunology research at WEHI and The Royal Melb Hospital
🚀 LaunchVic is offering VC funds up to $300k in backing if they set up offices in Victoria to address ‘valley of death’ concerns:
🦻 Cochlear chair Alison Deans joined CSIRO Main Sequence Ventures
👵 The Aus Gov is dishing out $318m for COVID-19 support in aged care homes
🇺🇸 Enlitic, a US based AI healthcare business, has commenced their IPO and is hoping to be on the ASX by December
📵 The Optus outage saw serious strife with triple-zero calls, mental health helplines, and hospitals across the country
Fun reminder of our serious reliance on tech and potential implications when things go wrong
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🌿 Eucalyptus announced their new preventative and performance digital health clinic for men (we lovin’ the longevity trend)
🚽 Which Drugs do Aussies love? Sewage testing is showing we’re now using more ketamine and less MDMA
🧟 UQ Scientists may have found a way to reverse ageing with “zombie-hunter” drugs - which hunt and clear build ups of senescent cells in the brain
💊 The Aus Commission on Safety + Quality in Health Care has warned that our overuse of antibiotics is causing outbreaks of drug-resistant infections
🦾 Westmead Private Hospital has a new robotic arm that can more accurately perform knee and hip replacement surgeries
📟 Personal alarms “won” a Shonky award as they often fail to call carers in emergency situations. Over 40 were tested and they all missed the mark
🥜 A Monash Uni study found nuts may enhance fertility for men
🤡 Smileyscope became the first VR device to receive FDA clearance for acute pain
💉 Ozempic shortages have forced Eucalyptus patients to switch drugs or reduce dosages
☀️ Aussies are using more SPF than ever but melanoma rates are increasing, making scientists think that sunscreen might provide a “false sense of security”
💼 Healius had an unexpected addition to its board: a private equity player aiming to boost the financial success of the pathology and radiology group
Annalise.ai has introduced a radiology triage suite for chest X-rays and head CTs in the United States
🏋️ Evolt 360 scored a major deal with GoodLife Fitness Canada to supply their body composition machines in 200 locations
🤝 The Digital Health CRC, global medtech leader Stryker and UTS are working together to develop a digital platform to create personalised healthcare solutions for patients
Whats this actually mean? Who knows… but heres hoping something cool will show
📊 A survey led by GPs revealed most Aussies rate GPs 10/10 for importance, but significantly overestimate health funding allocated to GPs
⚗️ MedChem Australia opened their new official headquarters, and are bringing together leading groups from USyd, Monash, and WEHI to work on drug discovery
🫀 Cardihab was selected for the AWS Health Equity Program, receiving computing credits and tech expertise for their cardiac rehab digital programs
🛣️ The National Policy Roadmap for AI in Healthcare is out and packed with 16 recommendations
Key recommendations include establishing a national council, safety frameworks, a shared code of conduct, a consumer digital health literacy program, and a National AI Capability Centre in Healthcare to help startups bring products to market.
🗂️ Qld Health’s electronic medical records crashed, affecting multiple hospitals and forcing staff to hand write notes
📋 Senators have called for ADHD treatment to be more affordable and accessible after a commission found a serious lack of funding and barriers to help
📉 Proposed changes to telehealth rebates are facing criticism as it could disadvantage already vulnerable patients and hinder accessibility to care in regional areas
🏥 The Albanese gov is looking at a shift towards a user-pays approach in aged care, hinting at tailored super products & wealth assessments to fund services
☁️ WA Health renewed its multimillion-dollar deal with global tech company Atos to manage its cloud and infrastructure services
US & Beyond the Borders
📦 Forward is rolling out AI-powered mall kiosks called “Care Pods” that supposedly provide on-demand biometric body scans, disease detection, and blood testing
🩸 The NHS is trialling simple blood tests for dementia
1️⃣ Amazon launched it’s One Medical membership, giving 24/7 virtual care access to Prime members for $9 USD per month
😔 The WHO has finally declared loneliness a global health priority
🌟 AstraZeneca launched a new health tech biz Evinova, that aims to optimise clinical trials using connected medical devices, sensors, and AI
👩🏾🔬 The White House launched an initiative on women’s health research, led by First Lady Dr Hill Biden to bring together the scientific, private sector, and philanthropic communities and drive womens health forward
✅ The FDA approved the type 2 diabetes drug Mounjaro for weight-loss under a new name, Zepbound
🌎 The Economist reported that the ratio of health-care spending to GDP has fallen from its pre-COVID peak across the developed world
🍏 The Apple Watch is introducing new features, including a blood pressure sensor, sleep apnea detection and a new paid health service
🔁 The NHS is providing access to wearable tech that automates insulin delivery and manages glucose levels for 150,000 people with type 1 diabetes
👨🔬 23andMe is launching a subscription service for customers to get more detailed DNA tests for diseases
💩 A Canadian Man used his mum’s poop as treatment for Crohn’s, but claims he experienced her menopause symptoms
🦴 Casgevy received the first regulatory approval in the world for a CRISPR-based therapy. It uses a patient’s stem cells from their bone marrow to treat sickle cell disease and a blood disorder called beta thalassemia
😢 Avail Medsystems - one of the leading companies building virtual connections between medical device sales reps and operating rooms abruptly shut down
⌚ GlobalData forecast that medical wearable tech will exceed $100B in 2023
🦠 Gate Bio are building a new class of small molecules called Molecular Gates that tackle disease by blocking harmful proteins at their source, and bagged a16z-led US$60m Series A
🎤 Fortuna Health, a platform to help navigate the complexities of Medicaid, raised $4m in seed funding, backed by singer John Legend and a16z
🇩🇰 Novo Holdings, owner of Ozempic maker Novo Nordisk, are investing $200m a year in biotech startups (but none of them have anything to do with diabetes)
💡 Bioluminescence Ventures, a biotech venture firm investing in next-gen medicines, announced its emergence from stealth with $477m in assets
🧑⚕️ Hinge Health is shooting for profitability in 2024 as the physical-therapy startup prepares for an IPO
👶 UK scientists and American “buff billionaires” are both researching the secrets of eternal youth, with startups exploring ways to keep our cells healthy and potentially extend our lifespan
🗝️ Could the personality type of a founder be the key to a startup’s success?
A two-year study published in Nature found that personality traits of founders differed significantly from the general population. Successful entrepreneurs were open to adventure and liked being the centre of attention. Startups with diverse teams with different combinations of personality types had greater odds of success
🧈 ‘Base editing’ in humans lowers cholesterol — but raises safety concerns
A new super-precise gene-editing approach switches off a gene in the liver that regulates ‘bad’ cholesterol. But in the first trial, two of the ten participants had heart attacks, with one dying five weeks after receiving the treatment.
🩹 Could a 10g ECG deliver a world with zero preventable heart attack?s
A research team led by RMIT University has developed a wearable ECG device that could be used to prevent heart attacks for people with cardiovascular disease. The heart monitor weighs only 10g, is waterproof, and is much more comfortable than bulky commercial devices
🚶♂️Spinal cord electrical implants make Parkinson’s patient walk without falling
A highly experimental implant that delivers electrical stimulation to the spinal cord has been found to improve mobility in a ground-breaking case study, with effects lasting over two years
🐭 New Aussie cancer drug improves chemotherapy
Pancreatic cancer is difficult to treat as a barrier forms around the tumour, stopping chemotherapy from penetrating. The new drug targets this scar-like tissue, with mouse models showing that survival time increased by more than 35% when used in combo with chemotherapy
🌙 Ever wondered why you feel giddy after an all-nighter?
Scientists found that acute sleep deprivation in mice led to an increase in dopamine release, a short-lived antidepressant effect, and heightened synaptic plasticity, which results in the feeling of being ‘wired’ when tired
🤖 AI Updates…
🧯 OpenAI fired and then rehired CEO Sam Altman… in what might have been the juiciest week ever in AI industry news. There was even a quick detour as he was supposedly joining Microsoft, then had a threat from >700 employees threatening to quit if he wasn’t reinstated.
TLDR; Ethics and commercialisation in AI be messy... and scary
If you have time to waste, check out all the deets by goodwork here:
🥚 Cercle, an AI-enabled fertility startup launched, backed by big gun partnerships and investors like former Meta COO Sheryl Sandberg
What do they do?
“The platform organizes unstructured medical data, such as medical records and test results, into a standardized format for fertility doctors and researchers, in the hopes it will help clinicians develop more personalized treatment plans and accelerate new discoveries in pharmaceuticals.”
🤖 a16z has predicted we’ll move away from WebMD and instead consult a “Baymax-like app” for our health queries that would combine an LLM and a healthcare services marketplace - lol no duh
👫🏽 Hims & Hers introduced an AI-powered service that recommends personalised treatments for patients
💰 Pharma companies are investing heavily in AI (shock), with a focus on treatment discovery and diagnostics
🐼 PANDA, an AI tool developed for screening of pancreatic cancer through CT scans significantly outperformed radiologists
💸 IBM has launched a $500m venture fund to invest in enterprise AI-focused startups
💰 Abridge announced a Series B raise of $30m for its AI clinical note-taking solution
Startup Stuff 🚀
Do you have a biomedical/health tech idea and want to develop a commercial plan?
BioElevate from Jumar Bioincubator is a two-day workshop into entrepreneurship and commercialisation. Immerse yourself in practical exercises, Ask-Me-Anything sessions, and engaging panel discussions - Apply here
Conducting research that could improve health outcomes in VIC?
The Victorian Medical Research Acceleration Fund (VMRAF) is now open and looking to support medical advancement with up to $100k is available for early-stage health and medical research and $500k is available for translation of health research - More here
NSW-based founder ready to increase commercialisation?
The NSW Gov MVP Ventures Program is back (but with less cash). The program offers between $25k to $50k of matched funding to early-stage startups to support commercialisation efforts - More here
Are you an innovator in WA?
The WA Gov has introduced a 50:50 matching grant of up to $200k via the Commercialisation Bridge Grant - More here
Looking for the best open opportunities for startups?
AirTree have saved us all some time and compiled a list of all the gov grants you can apply for before the end of the year. First time writing a grant? They’ve put together a grant writing guide too - More here
Ready to conquer the world of medical device registration in Australia?
Join MTP Connect’s REDI initiative for a bootcamp with TGA experts designed to empower medical device companies looking to navigate the regulatory landscape with confidence. The bootcamp is tailored for medical device companies planning for regulatory approval or expanding to Australia - More here
Need a site to run sequencing experiments?
Illumina is offering non-dilutive, in-kind grants for startups in Australia to generate proof-of-concept data at their Melbourne laboratory. Resources include business coaching, experiment planning meetings, and access to reagents - More here
Early-career professor conducting health research relevant to Google?
Google’s Research Scholar Program provides up to $60k USD to support the advancement of ECRs. They’re looking for health researchers working with AI, large datasets, and novel algorithms to better understand complex medical data - More here
Want to improve your AI skills for free?
Microsoft and LinkedIn have released a professional certificate in Generative AI, and there’s plenty of other free courses available to upskill - More here
27th - 30th Nov: Digital Health Week NZ 2023
Tues 28th Nov: 🎄WHAT THE HEALTH EOY DRINKS🎅 [Brisbane]
Thu 30th Nov: MedTech Actuator Showcase 2023 (Mel)
Thu 30th Nov:🎄WHAT THE HEALTH EOY PARTY☃️ [Sydney]
1st - 3rd Dec: Techstars Startup Weekend (Syd)
Wed 6th Dec: ANDHealth ACTIVATE Program Showcase (Mel)
Thu 7th Dec: 🎄WHAT THE HEALTH EOY PARTY🧑🎄 [Melbourne]
Mon 11th Dec: Cicada HealthTech Hub Open House (Syd)
Thanks to Hannah, Prab, Brian, Janice, Rahul, Emerson, George, Eldin & Roy for sharing fun things that made this drop!
💡Got thoughts on this? Or something to include next time?
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Ok. That be all today. See you soon with your party shoes!
Jas & team WTH
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