Startups Meet Pharma Cohort 2020: The Amgen – postMI challenge

Encourage continuity in treatment strategy and treatment optimization for post-myocardial infarction patients is the challenge #3 for this year’s Startups Meet Pharma programme set by Amgen.

Sixteen startups from Germany, Austria, UK, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Ireland, Poland, Italy, Finland, Greece, Spain, Estonia and Israel have been selected for the Startups Meet Pharma 2020 cohort. This year, five challenges have been released in collaboration with four EIT Health Partners: Amgen, Bayer, Beiersdorf and Boehringer Ingelheim.

Let’s take a closer look at Challenge#3: Encourage continuity in treatment strategy and treatment optimization for post-myocardial infarction patients.

Myocardial infarction (MI) occurs when blood flow decreases or stops to a part of the heart leading to irregular heart beat, cardiogenic shock and, in the worst case, cardiac arrest. Since the adult mammalian heart has very limited regenerative potential, the loss of cardiac muscle cells due to MI results in a fibrotic scar tissue that causes cardiac dysfunction and heart failure. Therefore, preventing MI in population at risk and in patients who have already experienced an MI episode is extremely important. Unfortunately, post-MI patients often face lack of advanced tools for patient risk stratification, no standardized discharge packages and limited information.

For that reason, Amgen is looking for a) a predictive analytic tool to identify very high risk patients & b) a procedure/tool which will provide a holistic support to post-MI patients after discharge (information for their treatment strategy or lifestyle changes, next steps, link among different type of HCPs.)

A total of 24 applications were received for the challenge, and five were selected to move forward: Cardiolyse (Finland), Collaborate Healthcare PC (Greece), Cievert Ltd (UK), HumanITcare (Spain) and Parsek Information Technologies GmbH (Austria).


Your solution to the challenge: Most comprehensive heart health data analytics platform for post-myocardial infarction patients.

What makes it a good fit? Our solution provides a unique combination of tools adjusted specifically for this patient group. Tools feature automatic rest ECG & Holter ECG data analysis, cardiac risk assessment and monitoring,  including warnings of personal behavioral changes.

Major expectations from the programme: In close cooperation with the pharma company do a validation of the proposed solution, run a pilot project, and roll out the concept to the MI-patient group globally.

Long-term vision for your startup: Heart risk predictive platform for remote monitoring patients to manage Heart Failure, Post-MI, CAD as global partner for pharma and insurance.

Collaborate Healthcare PC

Your solution to the challenge: As an advancedpatient CRMfor independent practices and at the same time a modern collaboration& communication tool, our platform reinforces patient risk stratification with AI and helps providers streamline and automate post-hospital discharge medical care delivery and patient engagement efforts.

What makes it a good fit? Our solution is an excellent fit as we can help Pharma organizationsdeliver value beyond the pill: by unlocking a powerful new, automated channel to gather critical insight into the efficacy of medication and by introducing a new way for them to play a key role in the delivery of care, support and well-being of the patient.

Major expectations from the programme: Product validation, networking and mentoring, strategic partnerships, access to EIT health investors, faster time-to-market.

Long-term vision for your startup: Become established as a category-leading provider of modern,digital health solutions that help medical practitioners in primary care eliminate errors and significantly improve patient adherence.

Cievert Ltd

Your solution to the challenge: Cievert’s solution, Penguin, is a digital platform that monitors patients once they have left the hospital. Penguin captures data from their wearables, results from their blood tests, readings from their medical devices, questions that are personalised for the patient’s condition, and so on. Penguin uses this data to automatically determine whether the patient is doing fine, whether they would benefit from self-management advice, or whether they would benefit from a clinical intervention.

What makes it a good fit? Penguin is therefore able to automatically stratify risk, provide the patient with self-management information, and capture real-world patient data without taking up any clinician’s time. The solution is also extremely scalable, so it can work with any clinical condition.

Major expectations from the programme: We would like to forge a partnership with a pharma company. Ideally, we would start off with a small-scale pilot in order to show off what we are capable of and check whether we are a good fit. We would subsequently graduate to a larger pilot and eventually scale across multiple conditions, in multiple countries.

Long-term vision for your startup: We are working closely with world-class data scientists in order to apply machine learning to the data that Penguin captures. This means that Penguin is constantly being fine-tuned in order to detect problems even earlier. The data captured by Penguin can also provide incredibly valuable information for personalising treatment as well as for drug development and evidencing.


Your solution to the challenge:  Post MI patients after discharge are a population group at risk due to the loss of cardiac muscle cells. Preventing possible relapses of these patients is extremely important but most of the time their follow-up care is inefficient and patients do not adhere to their treatment plan as they should. Digital health has proved to be a promising tool to improve patient adherence and empowerment through remote monitoring platforms, as well as to be time and cost-saving for medical professionals.

HumanITcare solves this problem by offering an AI telemonitoring platform that delivers disruptive ways of monitoring real-life data on the behavior of these chronic patients. The integrated platform collects accurate information about the state of the patient through different wearables/sensors and offers crucial features to control remotely 24/7 how patients are evolving from their homes: personalized variables to be monitored, alarm system when a value surpasses the limit, videoconference chat to reach doctors, content library with information about their disease or treatment… All this being a potential tool for post-MI patients. In addition, we fulfill all the GDPR requirements and laws of data protection.

What makes it a good fit? Our approach including the HumanITcare platform is a good fit because of all its technological features, service quality, evidence, and IP protection:

– Data Quality: HumanITcare collects raw data makes data collection and analysis transparent, increasing the reliability of RWD and hence, RWE.

– Flexibility: we can adapt to the requirements of the client by easily integrating new sensors or wearables thanks to our modular platform.

– Proprietary models: we have created a vast number of models and methods that provide information about several health insights of the patients, which have been validated in clinical environments. These methods are not publicly available and are in the process of being protected.

– Co-created: with patients to avoid their resistance to use our new technology.

– Validated: demonstrated accuracy detecting abnormal patterns of the behaviour of patients.

Major expectations from the programme: We wanted to participate in the programme to offer our services to solve major health problems together with pharmaceutical companies. Once in it, first, we expect to improve our entrepreneurship skills through the different workshops and services offered. Then, through meeting pharmaceutical companies, we expect to better understand their needs to be able to improve our platform and to collaborate with them in the future. Moreover, this program will give us visibility among different European pharmaceutical companies, which are one of our main target markets together with the healthcare market.

Long-term vision for your startup: HumanITcare is constantly growing and gaining traction among the digital health market. Our long-term vision is to continue growing and expanding our team to be able to improve the platform features and adapt it to changing user needs. Moreover, we are working to get the CE mark and the MDR in order to be able to perform as a medical device and thus start our expansion in European countries such as Germany, Belgium or Sweden, where we have detected a high market opportunity. Once our product is validated in this strategic EU countries, we plan to scale our product even more to the medical practice in chronic conditions with an innovative Value-Based Healthcare (VBHC) model to finally become a referent monitoring platform in the digital health market.

Parsek Information Technologies GmbH

Your solution to the challenge:  The AMGEN business case is right in our focus with our care pathway management solutions to manage chronic diseases. We intend to set up proper Care Maps on the basis or our VITALY managed care solution for post-myocardial infarction care. The Care management solution for post MI treatment will provide the requested procedure for the holistic support of the post MI recovery program. We can deliver the requested predictive analytical on the basis of the data created with our machine learning module which is under development currently or we integrate to a predictive tool of another vendor.

What makes it a good fit? We have developed a disease agnostic care pathway management solution which is used by outpatients in the UK with breast and prostate cancer. For these chronic diseases we developed disease specific care maps (pathways).  On the basis of the generic care management solution we will develop the post MI specific care maps with the pharma company.

Major expectations from the programme:  a) Get the pilot project with the pharma company and the ambition to roll it out as a proper customer project to patients with HC providers. b) Learn about the business cases of pharma companies c) Get additional know how on business models, refunding schemes, go to market, positioning and pitching.

Long-term vision for your startup: Our mission is to improve people‘s well-being by providing them with user-friendly solutions that simplify collaboration in health care. Our solutions enable the greatest number of people to access optimal health care. In this digitally transformed environment, information is easily shared between professionals and patients offering every person the best treatment available.