This is one of those startups that’s not quite a startup, but in its own niche, poised to become a medtech category killer. Gilbert Technologies has spent a decade developing their futuristic inhaler technology. Soon, at High Tech Plaza (HTC 27), their advanced smart prototype will be ready to go to market, one of the rare medtech devices developed in Eindhoven.
The spinoff of Technical University of Delft has developed a very sophisticated electric inhalation device that looks like something out of science fiction … and sort of is in that it has the potential to do so many things. The core technology is called “electro hydrodynamic atomization” or “electrospray.” That means their medical inhalation devices can gently deliver precise doses of medications in droplets that are exactly the same size. That's crucial for treating a disease where those droplets must be precisely a certain size to go to the right region of the lung and be absorbed by the target tissue.
This ability to tailor droplet size is essential in clinical applications that range from administering vaccinations to clinical applications for a wide variety of pulmonary diseases, including fibrotic diseases, severe asthma, lung cancer, pulmonary arterial hypertension and a wide range of other conditions and therapies.
Gilbert Technologies came to High Tech Campus Eindhoven two years ago to be close to development partner Philips Engineering Solutions. “The ecosystem of the High Tech Campus has all the deep-tech technology we require for the development of this device. And the investors. It’s the full ecosystem we think is super relevant,” said co-founder and Chairman George Hersbach.
“In the next round of development with Philips, we will need to develop a clinical-ready prototype for a CE mark. So, we are doing testing with molecules from pharmaceutical partners,” said Scott Fleming, Gilbert’s chief commercial officer. In early 2022, the goal is to take those devices to clinical trials within the next two years, Fleming added. Electrospray technology is already in use in other industries, including cosmetics and automotive, but Hersbach & Co. have the IP for medical. The Gilbert Technologies device will be connected to the internet via Bluetooth, and users can send the data to a cloud-based application so their doctors or caregivers can track their use and send them notifications.
Best of all, said Fleming, instead of a gas-propelled dose, the Gilbert technology inhaler emits a soft mist. This is much more convenient for people with an impaired breathing function
“You just push the button and breathe until you get the proper dose.”
In this High Tech Plaza series you will meet startups from our ecosystem, located in buildings HTC 12, 27 and 29. Read more about the High Tech Plaza here.