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Introducing Europe’s best health innovation startups

The brilliantly named Bits & Pretzels Healthtech conference held in Germany last month celebrated some of Europe’s best health startups.

At the event in Munich the winners of the EIT Health Catapult 2023 competition, led by EIT Health – part of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), were announced. These innovative young companies, recognised for their groundbreaking work in transforming the future of medicine, will get access to experts and investors who can help take them to even greater heights.

Each year, the EIT Health Catapult unearths some of Europe’s most inspiring start-ups, and the 2023 competition was no exception.

Magda Krakowiak, Director of Business Creation, EIT Health

One of the finalists, BiomeDX, picked up the ‘Alex Casta Audience Award‘ after winning the votes of attendees at Bits & Pretzels. The Austrian-based medtech is making precision medicine the future of cancer diagnosis by pioneering new microbiome-based technologies.

The company’s logo is lighting up New York’s Times Square, on the Nasdaq Tower, as part of its prize.

Innovators Magazine caught up with Dr Nikolaus Gasche, founder and managing director, Biome Diagnostics, to find out more about the company and what the win means for them.

“Our vision is to break new ground in biomedical research,” said Dr Gasche. “We function at the junction of academia and industry, delving into the fields of oncology, immunology, microbiome, and platform technologies.”

Victory at the Bits & Pretzels Conference Catapult Competition, Dr Gasche says, “is a testament to the strides BiomeDX is making in the realm of precision medicine, a significant part of which can be attributed to the support we’ve received from EIT Health.”

The founder said the “journey with BiomeDX has been made significantly smoother thanks to EIT Health.”

“Thanks to the backing of EIT Health, we have the resources to attract and incubate top international talent, crowdsource global insights, and effectively tackle the largest challenges facing microbiome research today,” the founder said. “The EIT Health community has been instrumental in facilitating our progress, providing us with essential resources, networking opportunities, and invaluable mentorship. This success is a shared one, as it epitomises the collective potential of collaborative efforts in the healthcare innovation landscape.”

And for early-stage medtech startups out there pursuing similar success, Dr Gasche has some words of encouragement.

“For early-stage medtech startups, the journey can often seem daunting and full of challenges. However, the rewards, when we strive to transform lives and health systems, are immeasurable.” he says. “I would urge all medtech startups to seize the opportunities provided by platforms like EIT Health, pursue their mission with persistence, and believe in the transformative power of their innovations.


The winners announced at the conference were some of the best European healthcare innovation across the Biotech, MedTech, and digital health categories: 

  • The Biotech category winner is Immunyx, a start-up from Israel. 
  • Spanish start-up, Time is Brain, won in the MedTech category. 
  • The Digital Health category award went to German start-up, Deepeye
  • BiomeDX was awarded the ‘Alex Casta Audience Award‘ based on the votes of event attendees. 

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Written By

Iain is a creative writer, journalist and lecturer, and formerly an editor of two international business publications. Iain is now editor of Innovators Magazine, as well as the strategic content director for OnePoint5Media.


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