Keynote Speakers

Dr. Gyorgy Abel

Dr. Gyorgy Abel

Medical Director of the Molecular Diagnostics and Clinical Immunology Laboratories and Point of Care Testing, Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, Beth Israel Lahey Health
Instructor in Pathology, Part-time, Harvard Medical School

| KEYNOTE LECTURE

Global trends in point of care diagnostics: new opportunities and challenges 

Biography

Gyorgy Abel, MD, PhD is Medical Director of the Molecular Diagnostics and Clinical Immunology Laboratories and Point of Care Testing at Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, Beth Israel Lahey Health. He also serves as Instructor in Pathology, Part-time, at Harvard Medical School. Gyorgy received his M.D. and a Ph.D. in immunology in Hungary. He completed post-doctoral fellowship at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and clinical pathology residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, USA. His lab was among the firsts to develop a diagnostic PCR for HCV and was first in the U.S. to offer the 20-minute LIAT IVD rapid PCR test clinically for influenza A/B.  Gyorgy has held office in professional organizations such as the American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC), the College of American Pathologists, and the American Association of Immunologists. He is the immediate Past-president of the AACC Academy. He authored or co-authored 65 publications and gave over 100 scientific presentations.

Dr. Antonella Santuccione Chadha

Dr. Antonella Santuccione Chadha

Co-founder and CEO, Women’s Brain Project
Chief Medical Officer, Altoida

| KEYNOTE LECTURE

Sex and gender differences in brain and mental disease, the work of the Women’s Brain Project

Biography

Dr. Antonella Santuccione Chadha is a medical doctor with expertise in clinical pathology, neuroscience and psychiatric disorders. She is head of stakeholder engagement for Alzheimer’s disease at Biogen.  She is co-founder and CEO of the non-profit organization “Women’s Brain Project” which addresses the influence of sex and gender on mental and brain diseases. As a medical doctor, Antonella has decades of experience in preclinical research, patient treatment, clinical development, medical affairs and setting up the international regulatory framework for Alzheimer’s disease (AD).

Always focused on solving the puzzles related to Alzheimer’s and other psychiatric diseases, she studied possible immunotherapies for AD in the laboratory of Prof Roger Nitsch and Christoph Hock at the university of Zurich. She also worked with Swissmedic, Roche Diagnostics and Roche Pharma, several European universities, the EU Commission Directorate for Health and Food Safety, the OECD, the CEOi and several Alzheimer’s’ disease organizations.

Since 2018 she is listed among the top 100 Women in Business in Switzerland and in 2019, she was elected Woman of the Year in Switzerland by the Magazine “Women in Business”. In 2020, she received the World Sustainability Award for her involvement in advancing Precision Medicine. She also received the award “Premio Medicina Italia” for her contribution to the management of the pandemic.  In 2021 she was acknowledged among the “Women for Innovation” in Switzerland from the University of Basel. 

She is the Vice-president of Euresearch and acts as scientific advisor for several start-up and scientific institutions. She is the author of several scientific publications and books, among them “Una Bambina Senza Testa” and “Sex and Gender Differences in Alzheimer’s disease” published in 2021. Dr. Santuccione Chadha is keenly interested in removing bias when developing solutions for mental and neurological diseases to achieve precision medicines. 

Pre-event Speakers – Regulatory Session

Annalisa Macagno

Annalisa Macagno

Senior Project Manager, Quality Management and Regulatory Affairs, Effectum Medical

| PRE-EVENT WORKSHOP

IVDR requirements for diagnostic products – in vitro tests, software, instruments

Biography

Annalisa has successfully established a QMS and transitioned IVD product development from research to market.

Rolf Kaufmann

Rolf Kaufmann

Senior Project Manager, Quality Management and Regulatory Affairs, Effectum Medical

| PRE-EVENT WORKSHOP

IVDR requirements for diagnostic products – in vitro tests, software, instruments

Biography

Rolf is a physicist with a background in X-ray medical devices and regulatory affairs.

Speakers – Introductory Session

Falko Schlottig

Falko Schlottig

Biography

Prof. Dr. Falko Schlottig is Director School of Life Sciences at University of Applied Science and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW), Head of the Research Ressort FHNW and Standortleiter beider Basel.

He has long standing experience in research and product development and has held different management positions in internationally operating, leading medical device companies and start-ups. He is a member of different national scientific organisations.

Speakers – Medical/Clinical Session

Joan Montaner

Joan Montaner

Director of the Neurovascular Research Lab & Neurology Department at HVM, Seville. Coordinator of the Andalusian Healthcare Stroke Plan.

| CLINICAL SESSION

Stroke triage at the ambulance using POCT blood biomarkers

Abstract

Our laboratory work focuses on the identification of biomarkers to be used as diagnostic and prognostic tools in ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke and also as companion diagnostics for several stroke therapies. Several experimental models of cerebral ischemia allow our lab to do screening of potential neuroprotectant compounds to be used as future stroke therapies that might be administered based on biomarkers information.

In the talk I will show recent data on a rapid POCT to be used at the ambulances to differentiate ischemic from hemorrhagic stroke and to select those ischemic strokes due to Large Vessel Occlusion (LVO). That technology might be used in the future to start reperfusion therapies outside of the hospitals in acute ischemic stroke patients or to shift the LVO patient to thrombectomy centers. I will discuss which of these medical indications is closer to the clinics and try to identify some of the reasons of the translational failure in the field of stroke biomarkers and how to break those barriers in the near future.

Biography

Joan Montaner completed his studies in Medicine and Surgery at the Faculty of Medicine in Cadiz, Spain. He underwent specialty training in Neurology at the Hospital Vall d´Hebron in Barcelona. Dr. Montaner received his research training within the program at the Instituto de Salud Carlos III, part of which was performed at the Neuroprotection Research Laboratory of the Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard University, Boston, MA, USA.

He created the Neurovascular Research Laboratory at Vall d´Hebron Neurovascular Unit in Barcelona in 2001 and he is the director of the Stroke Programme at IBIS-HVR, Sevilla, since 2013 where he also leads the Neurology Department at Macarena University Hospital. In 2018 he was appointed Coordinator of the Andalusian region Stroke Care Plan. His activities are reflected in the publication > 400 peer-reviewed articles (H index =81).

Dr. Montaner’s clinical and lab work focuses on the identification of biomarkers to be used as diagnostic and prognostic tools in brain damage and as companion diagnostics for several stroke therapies. Several experimental models of cerebral ischemia allow Montaner´s lab to do screening of potential compounds to be used as future stroke therapies.

 

Leslie Fendt

Leslie Fendt

PHC Integrated Solutions Product Leader, Roche

| CLINICAL SESSION

Remote vision monitoring – a case study 

Biography

Dr. Leslie Anne Fendt works at Roche leading the development and commercialization of one of Roche’s first Software-As-Medical-Device (SaMD) products, while simultaneously contributing to building out Roche’s overall digital health infrastructure, operating model, and strategy.

Previously at Roche she was leading the global commercialization of a novel immunology treatment, defining its go-to-market strategy and operationalizing the product launch worldwide. Before that, Leslie held a series of roles in sales, marketing, strategy, insights, and launch excellence both at global and affiliate level.

Leslie holds a Masters in Organic Chemistry with Minors in Business and Computer Science from Uni Basel, CH, and Cambridge, UK, and a PhD in Nanosciences from ETH Zurich. She is a board member of the Swiss Chemical Society and an active voice in the Digital Health/Tech community. Leslie lives with her partner, three daughters, and two cats in Switzerland.

 

Speakers – Industry Session

Peter Nestorov

Peter Nestorov

Founder and CEO, Scailyte AG

| INDUSTRY SESSION

First-in-kind molecular diagnostics for endometriosis based on biomarker discovery from single-cell RNA sequencing

Abstract

Endometriosis affects 10% of women in reproductive age.The average diagnostic journey is 7 years which involves countless medical visits and interventions, placing a huge burden on patients, the healthcare system and society. There is an urgent need for an easy and reliable diagnostic solution which can inform the onset of symptoms with sensitivity and confidence. Scailyte and Inselspital Bern have discovered a unique molecular biomarker that can diagnose endometriosis with over 90% accuracy in symptomatic patients of all stages of endometriosis. It is derived from the inner layer of the uterus sampled in a minimally-invasive way and analyzed via RNA-sequencing in diagnostic labs. This first-of-a-kind assay will radically improve the lives of millions of patients and significantly reduce the socio-economic burden caused by endometriosis.

Biography

Peter holds a PhD in Genetics from the University of Basel and a degree in Biochemistry from the University of Tübingen. He has been working in the emerging single-cell analysis market since 2015 and this gave him the inspiration to start Scailyte as co-founder and CEO in 2017.

Andreea Wiese

Andreea Wiese

Head of Partnering Point of Care, Roche Diagnostics

| INDUSTRY SESSION

The evolution of point of care 

Abstract

I will touch on the challenges that the healthcare market is facing, how these challenges are driving changes particularly in the area of Point of Care and how we can enable healthcare transformation with Point of Care solutions in order to increase value for our customers and patients.

Biography

MBA graduate, I am a tech and pharma industry professional, passionate about taking businesses to the next level by defining sustainable strategies, analyzing customer needs and market scenarios and aligning people, processes and capabilities in order to drive results.  I have more than 12 years of experience in global marketing and commercial organizations across multiple markets with a proven track record of making strategic commercial decisions and aligning the organization behind them with impactful presentations to management.

Christophe Verjus

Christophe Verjus

Senior Project Manager, Project Office & Business Development Manager, Medtech at CSEM

| INDUSTRY SESSION

Ava fertility tracker: wearable and AI for personalized health monitoring

Biography

Christophe Verjus leads the Project Office and Business Development for Digital Health at CSEM. He holds an Engineer degree in Physics from ESPCI Paris, and worked in the industry in Germany before joining CSEM in 2000. He has been active in the biomedical field for more than 20 years, both in hardware and data science, developing sensing technologies, wearables and medical systems for industrial partners and startups.

Speakers – Research Session

Petra Dittrich

Petra Dittrich

Associate Professor for Bioanalytics at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering, ETH Zurich

| RESEARCH SESSION

Microfluidics platforms for advanced diagnostic and biomedical applications

Abstract

Microfluidic devices are portable, facilitate the processing of tiny fluid volumes and hence, are perfectly suited for applications at the point of care. Nowadays, rapid tests for many biomarkers are available, usually based on laminar flow immunoassays on a simple microfluidic paper device, however, microfluidic platforms can further facilitate advanced applications. Multistep procedures, which require error-prone manual pipetting, can be operated in automated workflows on a single platform. In this contribution, I will introduce microfluidic methods for demanding applications, particular the assessment of liquid biopsies from cancer patients. We aim at analyzing different targets including circulating tumor cells and cancer-cell derived extracellular vesicles.

Biography

Petra Dittrich is Associate Professor for Bioanalytics at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering since 2014. Her research in the field of lab-​on-chip-technologies focuses on the miniaturization of high-​sensitivity devices for chemical and biological analyses, and microfluidic-​aided organization of materials.

She studied chemistry at Bielefeld University (Germany) and Universidad de Salamanca (Spain) from 1993 to 1999. She earned her PhD degree at the Max Planck-​Institute for Biophysical Chemistry (MPI Göttingen, Germany) in 2003 for her thesis on single fluorescent molecule spectroscopy and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy in microfluidic channels.

After a year as postdoctoral fellow at the MPI Göttingen, she had a postdoctoral appointment at the Institute for Analytical Sciences (ISAS Dortmund, Germany) (2004-​2008). For research stays, she was at the Cornell University (2002) and the University of Tokyo (2005). In 2008, she became Assistant Professor at the Organic Chemistry Laboratories of the Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences (ETH Zurich).

Alena Simalatsar

Alena Simalatsar

Professor UAS at the Institute of Systems Engineering, HES-SO Valais-Wallis

| RESEARCH SESSION

Control strategies at the POC for propofol anesthesia administration

Biography

Prof. Alena Simalatsar is a young tenure-track assistant professor at the Institute of Industrial Systems Engineering of the HES-SO Valais-Wallis in Sion, working in the domain of medical instrumentation.  She has received her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in 2009 from the University of Trento, Italy, and a Master’s degree from the Belarussian State University in Minsk, Belarus, both focusing on system-level analysis methodologies for embedded systems.

In the past 10 years, Prof. Simalatsar has been involved in several MedTech projects addressing the question of verification and trustworthy integration of medical devices conforming with system real-time and safety requirements. During these years she has developed a great experience in closed-loop drug delivery systems, autonomous microfluidics, and physiological signals acquisition and processing as well as experience in creation of a MedTech startup.

She is the author of more than 30 peer-reviewed publications in well-recognized journals and conference proceedings as well as two book chapters. In 2021, she has received a grant for DoAi-Vet as a Principal Investigator, the aim of which is to develop basic tools for EEG signal processing collected from pigs under anesthesia.

Mathias Wipf

Mathias Wipf

Co-founder and CEO, MOMM Diagnostics

| RESEARCH SESSION

Rapid rule-out of preeclampsia through protein ratio analysis at the point-of-care

Abstract

MOMM Diagnostics develops high-sensitivity rapid diagnostic tests. Our technology is developed in collaboration with FHNW and CSEM. It combines the cost advantages of lateral flow immunoassays, with the sensitivity of ELISAs, all in a reader as simple as a blood glucose meter – opening previously laboratory-based markets for office- and self-testing.

Our first test in development is a rapid test for preeclampsia, offering unprecedented sensitivity at the point-of-care. Preeclampsia is a significant health problem and cost burden (over 2B USD in the US alone). It affects 3-8% of all pregnancies and may lead to severe short- and long-term complications. Our test delivers information on the disease risk during pregnancy check-ups helping doctors to optimize treatment, reduce the stress and anxiety for expectant mothers, save lives and reduce costs.

Biography

Dr Wipf is a co-founder and CEO of MOMM Diagnostics, a start-up company developing rapid tests for preeclampsia, a dangerous pregnancy condition.

Dr Wipf’s background is in nanoscience and physics with a focus on biosensor technologies. He is an innovation-driven scientist and entrepreneur with a strong interest in novel sensor concepts for healthcare and the biomedical industry, striving to understand fundamental processes and to implement technologies to improve quality of life.

Christopher Wood

Christopher Wood

Research Associate, FHNW School of Life Sciences Institute for Chemistry and Bioanalytics

| RESEARCH SESSION

Rapid rule-out of preeclampsia through protein ratio analysis at the point-of-care

Abstract

MOMM Diagnostics develops high-sensitivity rapid diagnostic tests. Our technology is developed in collaboration with FHNW and CSEM. It combines the cost advantages of lateral flow immunoassays, with the sensitivity of ELISAs, all in a reader as simple as a blood glucose meter – opening previously laboratory-based markets for office- and self-testing.

Our first test in development is a rapid test for preeclampsia, offering unprecedented sensitivity at the point-of-care. Preeclampsia is a significant health problem and cost burden (over 2B USD in the US alone). It affects 3-8% of all pregnancies and may lead to severe short- and long-term complications. Our test delivers information on the disease risk during pregnancy check-ups helping doctors to optimize treatment, reduce the stress and anxiety for expectant mothers, save lives and reduce costs.

Biography

Chris Wood is a Research Chemist and Biomaterials Engineer currently focussed on developing point-of-care diagnostics. His recent projects include developing mobile phone based disease diagnostics, hydrogel modification for tissue engineering and the design of ultra-bright fluorescent nanoparticles.

He is active in the fields of Chemical Synthesis, Nanotechnology, NMR Spectroscopy, Materials Science, Antibody Characterisation, and POC Diagnostic Development. Chris holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in chemistry from the University of Cambridge and a first class degree in chemistry from the University of Oxford.