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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

hemotune AG - Improving Patient Outcomes with Innovation

Intoxications, systemic infections or autoimmune diseases are clinical conditions caused by circulation of disease-causing factors in the blood stream. Often, the most direct way of cure would be the specific removal of these molecules. The selective and efficient removal of large compounds such as bacterial toxins, antibodies or cytokines is still challenging through conventional blood purification, which use filters or adsorber cartridges. After years of research, hemotune AG have found a solution to that problem: HemoSystem allows multi-target precision medicine blood purification at ultra-high efficiency and selectivity using magnetic beads.

hemotune AG is a spin-off company originating out of the Functional Materials Lab at ETH Zurich. The company was founded in 2017 and so far raised more than CHF 18 million of funds since incorporation. As a company, hemotune envision a future where precision blood purification is an indispensable tool to improve patient outcomes and save lives in critical illness and beyond. The company is on a mission to develop breakthrough blood purification technology, enabling revolutionary intervention strategies for the most urgent medical needs and making them accessible for the benefit of patients.

Combining cutting-edge scientific results from biomedicine and nanotechnology, hemotune develops a disruptive blood purification platform based on magnetic beads. The non-toxic HemoBeads are the base of its technology. They contain an ultra-magnetic core, a non-sticky polymer and affinity binders that only attach to the desired compounds. By using different binders, the beads can target various targets. In the HemoDevice which is similar to a dialysis machine, the sorbent beads are mixed with the patient’s blood and bind to the target compounds. Because fresh beads are provided continuously, saturation is avoided. Beads and bound targets are highly efficiently removed from the blood in a magnetic cartridge, before the blood flows back to the patient. This makes sure that the beads are not entering the patient’s body.

Sepsis, also known as blood poisoning, affects almost 50 million people every year and leads to 11 million deaths. Because there is currently no cure, it was declared a health priority by the World Health Organization. Without curative treatments available, sepsis patients are kept on the intensive care units for very long time. In the United States alone, direct Sepsis costs are USD 24 billion. Being already the single most expensive condition treated in hospitals, costs are rising every year. At hemotune, an interdisciplinary team of scientists, engineers and clinicians combines cutting-edge clinical and scientific results to finding an effective treatment for septic shock patients. The company’s revolutionary therapy focuses on the immunological aspects of sepsis and tackles multiple disease pathways in parallel, to restore immune balance. The multi-target capacity, selectivity and clearance efficiency are the key features of HemoSystem. Neither conventional blood purification methods nor drugs currently offer a comparable precision medicine approach. “Our therapy has the goal to significantly improve patient outcomes, shorten the length of stay in the Intensive Care Units and thereby reducing the burden of sepsis for patients, hospitals, the healthcare system and society.”

hemotune is headquartered in Schlieren and is driven by about 20 highly qualified researchers from all over the world on a novel blood purification system in the style of classic dialysis. The company’s solution and device enable to pump blood out of the body. Rather than providing like the conventional dialysis filter or cartridge, the company’s solution mix the blood with magnetic nanoparticles. These have antibodies on their surface which are binding toxins. With a magnetic filter it is then possible to filter out the bound toxins in a highly efficient manner. The company’s CEO Langenegger explains their cutting-edge solution and the innovative technology. The first application of the blood purification platform will restore an appropriate immune response in sepsis. This is the most severe form of infection, in which the body’s own defense reaction damages its own tissue and organs and leads to a life-threatening situation. Sepsis is an underserved global health problem. In addition to mortality rates of up to 45 percent in septic shock, sepsis also leads to sharply rising healthcare costs.

At this juncture, hemotune AG is preparing the clinical trial in order to achieve market approval of the HemoSystem in sepsis. The company is also all set to treat the first patients as early as 2024 as part of clinical trials. From this point of view, hemotune AG is a prime example of a Swiss company that raises medical technology, innovative spirit and cutting-edge technology.

hemotune AG

Lukas Langenegger, CEO


“Our therapy has the goal to significantly improve patient outcomes, shorten the length of stay in the Intensive Care Units and thereby reducing the burden of sepsis for patients, hospitals, the healthcare system and society”


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