Selio Medical's Innovative Device Prevent Collapsed Lungs During Biopsy

Selio Medical's Innovative Device Eliminate Collapsed Lungs During Biopsy

Lung biopsy is a frequently performed procedure, globally carried out over a million times every year. It is an indispensable tool in evaluating pulmonary abnormalities and the method for a definitive lung cancer diagnosis. Unfortunately, 1 in 3 patients suffer from a collapsed lung, called pneumothorax, a dangerous complication causing the patient significant pain, distress and difficulty breathing. It can transform a routine outpatient diagnostic procedure to one requiring hospitalization and invasive treatment, substantially increasing cost of care. In some cases it may even be life threatening.

The Irish startup Selio Medical is determined to transform lung biopsy procedures and eliminate pneumothorax. While previous attempts to tackle this problem have focused on plugging the needle tract in the lung post-biopsy have proven ineffective, Selio’s revolutionary approach prevent the pneumothorax occurring before the biopsy even takes place. They have developed a single use device that creates an air tight seal between the needle access route and the lung, preventing any air leak from the lung during or after the procedure, eliminating the risk of pneumothorax. The prototype has gone through extensive tests in the lab and pre-clinical in vivo studies have shown very positive results.

On average, over 30% of patients undergoing a lung biopsy will suffer from a pneumothorax. This leads to over 100,000 extra hospital admissions, invasive treatment, and an average cost of $11,000. Currently, there is no effective method of prevention, and with a rising global incidence of lung cancer, there is a large unmet need for solutions that can help lower the risk of pneumothorax. Selio Medical has developed a simple and effective technology, the first-in-class medical device designed specifically to address the complication of lung biopsy related pneumothorax. By developing a method that effectively avoid pneumothorax, increasing the safety of lung biopsies, clinicians across the world can carry out significantly more procedures, positively impacting clinical workload and stress. In addition, eliminating the need for further clinical intervention significantly reduce costs for the patient, insurer and health provider. Most importantly, the innovative device will prevent patient pain and distress, improve care, and potentially even prevent deaths.

Selio Medical is based in Trinity College Dublin and was founded by Colm McGarvey and Garret Ryan who met during a BioInnovate fellowship at the National University of Ireland, Galway in 2014. During the program they discovered a large unmet clinical need to eliminate pneumothorax during or following lung biopsy, and analyzed the market opportunity before developing their solution. They have since won multiple awards, including MedTech Innovator International Pitch Competition, 2017 EIT Health Headstart Award, as well as being singled out as one of the top 10 investor-ready startups in Enterprise Ireland’s Big Ideas 2017 showcase. The startup has raised over 500,000 in non-dilutive grant funding and is raising a Series A round of €3.5 million to bring the technology through FDA and CE mark submissions by 2021. They are expecting to start first ‘in-man’ clinical trials in 2018.