Innovate UK have awarded £219,017 to develop a device to treat the comorbidities of Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) and Acute Kidney Injury (AKI). Swansea company Haemair Ltd lead the project supported by Derbyshire partners Automated Technologies Ltd. Acute Kidney injury arises commonly in ARDS patients; recent studies indicate that over 40% of patients suffering Covid-19 induced ARDS also suffer AKI. In other forms of ARDS (afflicting around 30,000 UK patients annually), the proportion is up to 50%. The mortality rate for patients suffering these comorbidities can be as high as 85%. Hence, the new technology has the potential to save thousands of lives.
Current methods of treatment for this group of patients employ two invasive devices, one for treating the lung disease and one for the kidney disease, giving poor patient outcomes at a high cost.
Innovate funding will enable the project to further develop Haemair’s technology. The design builds on Extracorporeal Life Support (ECLS) technology, which provides an auxiliary lung that relieves the demands on the patient’s own distressed lungs. The Haemair innovation enables the new device to simultaneously perform as an ECLS supporting the lungs and, at the same time, removing urea and other components that would otherwise be filtered out by healthy kidneys.
Haemair’s patented dual-purpose device will permit a simpler, cost effective, treatment with only one access point to the patient. Limiting the number of access points is important because the greater the number of invasive access points in a patient the greater the morbidity and mortality.
The aim of the project is to demonstrate the efficacy of the device and, by mid-2021, to provide the capability to manufacture the device.
Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency, drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas. The agency connects businesses to the partners, customers and investors that can help them turn ideas into commercially successful products and services, and drive business growth.
Innovate UK Executive Chair, Dr Ian Campbell says:
“In these difficult times we have seen the best of British business innovation. The pandemic is not just a health emergency but one that impacts society and the economy.
Haemair, along with every initiative Innovate UK has supported through this fund, contributes an important step forward in driving sustainable economic development. Each initiative also helps to realise the ambitions of hard-working people.”
Dr Bill Johns, Managing Director of Haemair, says:
“The funding helps us to meet our goal of saving lives of lung-disease sufferers whilst building an exciting high-growth UK company.”
For further information, see the Haemair web site: www.haemair.com, email us at email@example.com.