These Six Startups Are Getting Up to $50,000 Each -- Without Losing Equity. Meet the New Class of the Science Center’s Digital Health Accelerator

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Six promising startup companies have been accepted into the second class of the University City Science Center’s Digital Health Accelerator.

Imagine enrolling your ill pet in a clinical trial – for free. Or getting treatment for a chronic wound without going to the doctor’s office. These technologies are among those being developed by the six promising startup companies that have been accepted into the second class of the University City Science Center’s Digital Health Accelerator (DHA).

The awardees were selected from a pool of 69 applicants via a multi-stage process which emphasized inclusion of women and minority entrepreneurs. They include:

  •     Grand Round Table, which emails primary care providers a daily summary about their scheduled patient follow-ups so they can better manage high-risk patients, keeping them out of the hospital.
  •     Graphwear Technologies, which has developed the first graphene patch which measures dehydration, glucose, and lactic acid levels, all from your sweat.
  •     InvisAlert Solutions, which uses a wearable device to help care providers monitor patients in institutional settings, improving compliance.
  •     Oncora Medical, which has a tool for planning personalized cancer radiotherapy, reduces the incidence of toxic radiation side effects in patients and improves cancer center efficiency.
  •     One Health Company, which helps to enroll ill pets in trials of cutting-edge therapies, improving their wellness and helping to develop new therapies for human medicine.
  •     Tissue Analytics, which transforms the smartphone into a platform for evaluating and measuring things like chronic wounds, burns, and skin conditions.

Each DHA awardee will receive up to $50,000, professional mentorship, and networking opportunities with a variety of key healthcare stakeholders including insurers, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals and research institutions located in the Greater Philadelphia region. During the 12-month program, these early-stage healthcare companies will also receive membership to the Innovation Center @3401 (ic@3401)—a partnership between the Science Center and Drexel University, in collaboration with Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania and Safeguard Scientifics.

Applicants that got their start in Greater Philadelphia fared particularly well in this second DHA competition, with all companies selected for the 2016 class having some connection to the University of Pennsylvania or Drexel University. Four of the selected companies, Grand Round Table, GraphWear Technologies, Oncora Medical and Tissue Analytics, are graduates of DreamIt, which is also located at ic@3401. Of the six companies in the second DHA class, three are women or minority-owned. The DHA uses a selection panel of industry and investor professionals, including a number from outside the region, to review applications and make recommendations.

Launched in 2014 by the Science Center, the DHA supports early-stage digital health companies with funding, office space, professional mentorship and introductions to key healthcare stakeholders in the Greater Philadelphia region. Funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration Growth Accelerator Fund enabled the second class of the DHA to continue to focus on minority and women-led businesses. The DHA has also received support from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development.

To date, the seven companies in the inaugural class have gone from prototype to commercialization, creating 68 new jobs, generating over $1 million in revenue, and raising almost $9 million in follow-on investment.

About the Science Center
The University City Science Center is a dynamic hub for innovation, and entrepreneurship and technology development in the Greater Philadelphia region. It provides business incubation, programming, lab and office facilities, and support services for entrepreneurs, start-ups, and growing and established companies. Since it was founded in 1963, graduate organizations and current residents of the University City Science Center’s Port business incubators have created more than 15,000 jobs that remain in the Greater Philadelphia region today and contribute more than $9 billion to the regional economy annually. The Science Center is leveraging its history as the nation’s oldest and largest urban research park as it joins forces with Wexford Science + Technology, a BioMed Realty company, to expand its footprint and rebrand its physical campus as uCity Square — a true mixed-use community of ingenuity. For more information about the Science Center, go to ucscreview.org.

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Jeanne Mell

Kristen Fitch