Flemish life-sciences startup Axithra has raised 10 million euros in seed capital in an investment round led by Imec.xpand and Kurma partners. Recently spun off from Imec and Ghent University, Axithra combines semiconductor process and photonics knowledge to create an on-chip Raman spectrophotometer to measure drug concentrations in a patient’s blood. This will allow for optimal dosing: when administering insufficient doses, a drug loses effectiveness, while excessive doses may cause toxic, potentially fatal, side effects.
“Given the large variation between patients in intensive care, this development will enable us to better treat our patients with severe infections and protect them from possible harm. Because current solutions have long turnaround times, Axithra’s platform will help us intervene more quickly, improving outcomes of severe infections and reducing the length of stay of patients in the intensive care unit, hereby decreasing costs,” says Jan De Waele, intensivist at the Ghent University Hospital.
As a first application, the spinoff will deploy its technology to measure beta-lactam antibiotics. This class of antibiotics is by far the most commonly used to treat or prevent bacterial infections and is administered to millions of intensive care patients each year.