Healios develops digital biomarkers to both improve the journey for patients suffering from Multiple Sclerosis and to accelerate research in this space. Interview with Guilhem Dupont, CEO of Zühlke Ventures’ youngest Portfolio Company Healios.
Guilhem, why did you leave an attractive corporate career to found Healios?
Healthcare offers tremendous opportunities in this age of digital transformation. There is an unmet need for stronger real-world data to measure the effectiveness of treatments and the need for more accurate diagnostic tools that allow personalisation of treatments. That's where Healios comes in: we use sensor data of wearables and smartphones to quantify the progression of neurological diseases, for example Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
Why is this valuable?
Our solution enables specialist doctors to determine disease progression earlier and more precisely than present methods and thus adapt treatment to reduce disease progression and accumulation of handicaps. With benefits for patients, physicians and health insurances. With the same solution we are also able to empower clinical research, an area where we see exponential adoption of digital solutions in the wake of Covid-19.
Guilhem Dupont is passionate about empowering patients and caregivers affected by a chronic condition. Guilhem worked for 12 years in global leadership roles at Johnson & Johnson and Roche.
Which partners support you on your way?
We are very happy to be part of a world-leading group of well-aligned partners across the value chain. Internationally renowned RC2NB (Research Center for Clinical Neuroimmunology and Neuroscience Basel) lead by Prof. Ludwig Kappos, is leading the way for MS therapeutics and comprehensive disease assessment. The Center is also strongly engaged in the research of digital biomarkers for MS and has signed cooperation agreements with both Roche and Novartis for further accelerating research and implementation. Zühlke Ventures, besides having been a corner investor in our seed round, provides valuable support preparing us for scale-up.
Where do you see your biggest challenges?
We have successfully developed other digital health products in the past and built a well-structured organisation. The main challenge is to manage fast growth to meet demand.
Where do you see the next milestones for Healios?
We are confident to be able to attract more partners to the ecosystem and are looking forward to really improve the lives of individuals suffering from neurological diseases in the long term.
Dr. Patrick Griss is an Executive Partner of Zühlke Ventures, the investment arm of the Zühlke Group, and a board member of several disruptive companies. Using his experience as an operator in the HealthTech sector, he wears his Investor hat to identify top teams, business ideas and technologies, and lead them to success.