Cork start-up Gasgon Medical raises €2.25m to develop IV safety device

Irish start-up Gasgon Medical has raised €2.25m in seed funding to accelerate growth and bring its IV safety device to market.

The company’s first funding round was led by Dublin investor DBIC Ventures. Additional investment came from Enterprise Ireland, syndicates from Ireland’s Halo Business Angel Network and Irrus, European syndicates and private investors from the US, including former Medtronic VP of R&D Cliff Emmons.

Gasgon Medical has designed AirVault, a device for removing air bubbles from fluids primarily in medical IV infusions. It aims to remove the need for nurse intervention by automatically capturing air bubbles before they become a problem, and to deliver a more accurate infusion dose so patients are treated and recover faster.

Last December, the Cork start-up received a €3m Fast Track to Innovation grant from the European Innovation Council. The previous month, Gasgon Medical was named the overall winner at the 2021 InterTradeIreland Seedcorn competition and received a €100,000 cash prize.

Gasgon Medical CEO and founder Vincent Forde said the resources required to track and eliminate IV air bubbles are a “constant drain” for nurses and health systems.

“Typically an alarm system alerts the nurse or patient to the presence of air, but there is still this manual approach to removing the bubble,” Forde said. “Nurses complain mostly about alarm fatigue and the disruption to workflows, especially at night when resources are low and patients’ sleep is affected.

“We provide a simple solution that removes the air proactively, before it causes an issue, to improve the drug delivery schedule and reduce the workload for nurses,” Forde added.

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Forde said the latest funding will help the medtech grow its team of six and move towards bringing its flagship product to market. Hospitals in the US and Ireland are working with the company on development.

“Our priority is in accelerating development work to attain regulatory approval, to be ready to launch products into hospitals, with an initial focus in the US,” Forde said.

The money will also be used for marketing and expanding into new markets. Gasgon Medical said it has signed trial plans with hospitals in Spain and Portugal, along with an agreement with a veterinary hospital in Sweden.

“We first engaged with Gasgon in early 2020 and have been extremely impressed with the management team and their progress over the past two years leading up to this investment round,” DBIC Ventures managing partner Richard Watson said.

“The AirVault device addresses a significant clinical need, which has been validated through very strong buy-in from clinicians and potential commercial partners in Europe and the US,” Watson added.

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