Sep. 05, 2018

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BGN Technologies, the technology transfer company of Ben-Gurion University and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, announced today that researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU), Israel, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and Hadassah Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel have developed a novel monitoring technology, named VitalMiner, for the early prediction of hemodynamic instability episodes in intensive care patients. 

Hemodynamic instability is defined as instability in blood pressure, in particular hypotension, which can lead to inadequate arterial blood flow to organs, and to organ failure. It is considered one of the most critical events that require effective and prompt intervention in the intensive care unit (ICU). 

The VitalMiner software was developed by Prof. Mark Last​ from BGU's Department of Software and Information Systems Engineering in collaboration with Prof. Victor F. Garcia who is the founding director of Trauma Services at Cincinnati Children's Hospital and professor of Surgery and Pediatrics at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, as well as Prof. Raphael Udassin of the Pediatric Surgery Department, Hadassah University Hospital. 

The software monitors vital signs in real time and applies advanced algorithms to predict impending episodes of hemodynamic instability (e.g. hemorrhagic shock) before symptoms first appear, which is a critical window when clinical intervention is most successful. Once patients become unstable, treatment is much more difficult, and both morbidity and mortality are increased. The software can run from systems that connect either locally or remotely to clinical information systems and vital signs monitors in various care settings, including civilian and military intensive care units, emergency rooms, intensive care transports (mobile, fixed, and rotatory wing) and home intensive care services.

In the evaluation experiments on retrospective data from three hospitals, VitalMiner has shown improved predictive capability up to 6% in sensitivity and up to 13% in specificity vs. the existing approaches. 

“Hemodynamic instability is a severe and life-threatening complication in the intensive care setting," said Garcia. “Earlier prediction of physiological deterioration of patients by using 'smart' monitoring software and machine learning algorithms will save lives and enable better informed resuscitation of the critically ill and injured." 

 The investigators' preliminary findings suggest that compared to existing state of the science, the new system will enable earlier prediction of hemodynamic instability, potentially up to several hours before currently available monitors and modalities are capable of detecting a major clinical manifestation.  

In 2012, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) entered into a multi-year collaboration to address the lack of medical devices designed specifically for children. The goal of the collaboration is to improve health outcomes for children by ensuring device design that is customized to meet children's' unique physiology and medical needs. 

The collaboration pairs BGU's technical and engineering capabilities with the medical expertise of CCHMC physicians. To date, 210 projects have been reviewed under the collaboration, out of which seven were selected to receive up to $100,000 in the first round, with all funding contingent upon achieving project-specific developmental milestones. The funds are contributed by both BGU and Cincinnati Children's Hospital. Last year, a startup company, Xact Medical, was established based on a product that emerged from the collaboration.  

“This is an excellent example of the kind of potentially life-saving inventions that emerged from our partnership with Cincinnati Children Hospital," commented Netta Cohen, chief executive officer of BGN Technologies. “We are certain that this important invention will not only help save lives, but also shorten the length of ICU stay, thus lowering hospitalization costs. BGN is currently looking for a partner for further development and commercialization of this system." 

According to a Mondor Intelligence report, the patient monitoring market is expected to reach approximately $28 billion by the end of 2020, growing at a CAGR of around 6% from 2016 to 2021. 

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Cincinnati Business Courier​