On Thursday, 09/28/2017, the Aachen (Germany) based enmodes GmbH has received a 1.65 million EUR grant from the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). The funds are made available to enmodes jointly with the Lung Clinic Köln-Merheim / University Hospital Witten/Herdecke, and will be utilized to conduct further research into the RAS-Q™ technology, aiming to develop a portable long-term lung support system for the treatment of patients suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). The portable device will for the first time enable lung support in a manner that allows improved resilience and quality of life without respiratory distress.
“Grant givers showed interest in our developments very early on”, recaps Prof. Dr. Tim Kaufmann, CEO and co-founder of enmodes, “in early 2016, just one year after the initial idea for RAS-Q™, we received a first research grant to fund an improved prototype and conduct intensive trials. At the time it was handed out through the Central Innovation Program Mittelstand (ZIM/BMWi). A year later we were able to join the European Horizon 2020 program ‘EIT Health’. Receiving yet another grant at this stage is a very positive signal, and encourages us to bring the RAS-Q™ technology to market maturity and help millions of COPD patients.”
Current projections from the World Health Organization (WHO) indicate that more than 65 million people worldwide suffer from COPD; and is considered to be the fourth most common cause of death in adults.
RAS-Q™ will still take a few years until ready for wide-spread market introduction. But Prof. Karagiannidis (Mr.), head of the ECMO Center of the Lung Clinic Köln-Merheim, is certain: “Such a technology can be an immense progress in the therapy of advanced COPD, which is currently only treated with permanent respiration devices that severely impact the quality of life.”
Approving the grant also pursues hands-on economic benefits: Currently, the treatment of a single COPD patient in Germany costs about 25,000 EUR – per month. Using the RAS-Q™ technology not only the long-time prognosis and quality of life of the patients can be improved, but also these cost can be reduced to a fraction.
The researchers are confident to attain the ‘first in man’ trial in the second half of 2020. Afterwards, the product launch and thereby long awaited relief for the patients is within reach.