Life science and medical devices

Here you find innovation projects related to life science and medical devices.


Colorific is a revolutionary detection tool utilizing innovative nanoswitch technology. Colorific directly captures analytes from samples, producing observable colour changes without pre-processing of the sample. The ability to use a variety of samples, even coloured ones, makes it suitable for quick on-site point-of-care use. Moreover, the sustainable nanoswitch production aligns with environmental goals. This project focuses on harnessing Colorific's nanoswitch technology to address rapid and easy cardiovascular disease detection. Its adaptability allows for the expansion of the technology's impacts beyond healthcare. The overarching vision is to establish a fast, accurate, and versatile testing solution that caters to various needs, including emerging disease diagnostics in healthcare, veterinary diagnostics, and food safety.

Contact: Mikhail Yuryev, Innovation Advisor (CHEM)


The goal of CorneaSense is to develop a diagnostic technology for accurate assessment and improved, precision management of corneal health. Many diseases and injuries of the cornea (outer most layer of the eye) are associated with abnormal changes in the cornea’s water content. Current clinical standards to assess corneal water content are limited to thickness measurements of the central cornea under the assumption that the cornea must expand to make room for increased water. In other words, water content is inferred from thickness and not measured directly. This practice suffers from two key limitations (1) thickness measurements do not account for the significant population variation in corneal thickness thus thickness measurements are, at best, a screening tool. (2) By the time corneal water content becomes apparent via visual assessment or thickness measurements, its often too late to efficiently treat or even save the tissue. Conversely, accurate quantification 

The CorneaSense project leverages a decade of corneal measurements at millimeter wave. We have developed a method whereby minute changes in corneal tissue water content are quantified via observation of millimeter wave propagation it bounces around inside the cornea. The features of these echoes are characterized by the cornea’s parameters and careful measurement allows us to provide detection of disease, via confirmation of increased tissue water, much earlier than any existing technology. This will result in conserved sight and improved patient outcomes.

This project will leverage the existing science and funds will be used to create a real time instrument to be used in pilot patient trials.

Contact: Pekka Kettunen, Innovation Advisor (ELEC)


Perinatal mental health (PMH) problems, particularly anxiety, depression and fear of childbirth (FOC), affect expectant mothers, families, and societies worldwide in devastating ways, through pregnancy and birth complications, issues with mother-infant bonding, and declining birth rate, to name but a few. Sadly, these problems go often undiagnosed and untreated. The Daring Birth (DaBi) project addresses the grave need for improved PMH care by prototyping and testing a Digital Therapeutics (DTx) for PMH, i.e. the DaBi solution, which is also expected to serve as a novel digital biomarker for PMH. DaBi solution builds on the research of digital emotion tracking, a scientific affect measurement and self-reporting approach developed at Aalto University. Emotion tracking is essential in treating PMH issues because it enables users to enhance their level of understanding about themselves, a key to emotional awareness and regulation. Emotion tracking is combined with user engaging elements and clinically relevant exercises, and we will study the impact of the DaBi solution on patient-reported PMH outcomes and estimate the cost-reduction potential. The Finnish perinatal care system is the highest ranked globally and offers a unique opportunity for such research, to support our commercialization goals for the European and US markets.

Contact: Juha Siivola, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


Aalto University's thinTouch project aims to develop a completely new technology for the treatment of a specific brain disease. The invention originated from the Biodesign Finland project, the purpose of which is to identify the needs of healthcare and to develop solutions based on these researches. hentoTouch combines research from different fields of science, creating a completely new concept for the treatment of that disease. The form of treatment is alleviating a huge global health problem that is also currently placing a significant financial burden on health care as well as limited productivity. The aim of the project is to create a solution that offers the opportunity for better treatment results and thus an improved quality of life for patients, as well as significant savings in public funds. In addition, the project will bring Finland to the forefront of the international treatment of this brain disease.

Contact: Ilkka Hyytiäinen, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


Induction of labor (IOL) is a common obstetric procedure to initiate the childbirth if it does not naturally occur or risks to the mother or fetus have arisen. In 2022, there were 40,5 billion IOL globally. In the western countries, approx. every third childbirth is induced. However, IOL is a challenging process failing in 35% of the cases. Current tools for IOL do not offer features supported by the recent scientific evidence or provide real-time information on the baby’s wellbeing or the IOL progress. Induction failure leads to childbirth complications and increases health care costs. Failed IOL causes over 1,6 billion € cost in the U.S. alone annually, suggesting the global economic burden to be approx. 10 billion €.

We seek to address the challenges and limitations of current tools and techniques for IOL with the Inga project, a novel diagnostic device intended for effective and optimized IOL. The Inga concept enables continuous real-time monitoring of fetal wellbeing and uterine contractions and informed decision making about the IOL management. During the R2B project we intend to assess the functionality of a testing device in both laboratory and clinical environments, and to examine various aspects of the concept, including the most effective combination of IOL methods and fetal wellbeing. The Inga concept has the potential to revolutionize and modernize the field of IOL by providing a safer, more effective, and more convenient method for IOL, which will also lead to better maternal childbirth experience.

Aalto University's Department of Neuroscience and Biomedical Engineering will be responsible for the project  in cooperation with Helsinki University Hospital. During the research project, our main focus is to investigate the best commercialization route for Inga’s sensor and drug delivery system technologies. In 2022, Inga was selected to the SPARK Finland mentoring program demonstrating the high maturity and promise of the concept.

Contact: Ilkka Hyytiäinen, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


The Nosore R2B project investigates the suitability of a measurement sheet based on smart textiles for assessing the risk of pressure ulcers and thus for the prevention of weight wounds.

Contact Ilkka Hyytiäinen, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


Addressing hearing loss is crucial due to the expected rise in hearing loss cases, which could lead to a significant economic burden by 2050. Early identification of hearing loss is crucial for effective treatment, reducing costs and functional decline associated with the condition. This project explores solutions that result in earlier intervention. Benefits include efficiency, actionability, and reach, leading to improvements in quality of life, productivity and social inclusion.

Contact: Panu Kuosmanen, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


Cancer being serious burden on society is one of the most challenging diseases due to its biological complexity. According to the WHO, one in six deaths worldwide is caused by cancer. In Europe, in 2020, more than 560 new cases of cancer were diagnosed per 100,000 people, and cancer mortality was 263 per 100,000 people. The high mortality rate is partly due to the fact that asymptomatic and mild cancer cases are not detected in time. Traditional diagnostic methods are typically based on organ dysfunctions, and advanced molecular imaging techniques are expensive and only available in large hospitals. Our goal is to develop a new technology for molecular imaging diagnostics that would be cheaper and more accessible than current diagnostic technologies and would enable early stage cancer diagnosis for a significantly wider part of the population than at present.

Contact: Janne Raula, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


Every year, an alarming 11 million burn injuries occur worldwide, with 180,000 resulting in death. This issue is particularly devastating in low-income countries, but high-income countries are also significantly affected, especially among children, working-age adults, and the elderly. In addition, chronic wounds like diabetic ulcers afflict a staggering one-fourth of the 460 million people with diabetes worldwide, highlighting the urgent need for improved burn prevention and treatment strategies. 

Extensive burns and poorly healing, deep chronic wounds are challenging to treat. Their treatment often requires repeated visits to specialized healthcare, which consumes a lot of healthcare resources. The most important factor in rapid healing is the quality of the new skin as the wound heals. In large burns and chronic wounds, the size and complexity of the wound often prevent the natural healing process. 

The WoundSprayIQ device aims to change the way advanced therapies are administered. By analyzing the wound surface and the operator's actions, the WoundSprayIQ enables individualized and accurate administration of advanced wound therapies, including biomaterials, drugs and cellular therapies. In large-area burn wounds, the  WoundSprayIQ optimizes therapy dosing to the entire treated surface. In chronic wounds, the WoundSprayIQ device provides accurate control over therapy administration specifically to meet the critical demands of advanced therapy 3D application to produce an effective repair-inducing therapeutic composition and porosity as well as to spatially optimize the distribution of biologically active therapy components throughout the entire treatment volume.   

This project aims to research technical challenges and commercialization opportunities for the WoundSprayIQ device. By addressing both aspects, the project will create a comprehensive plan for reaching commercialization readiness.

Contact: Sami Ala-Luukko, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


Urisens is a healthcare technology solution that solves a significant need in elderly and long term care (LTC), screening vital urine parameters renal function and hydration. It takes usually a minimum of 3 days for the caregiver to notice the worsening health for long-term bed patients. The clinician suspects of various clinical conditions, including dehydration, electrolyte imbalances and infections. Getting the results of lab tests take another day. 4 days passed; still the clinician does not have enough data for diagnosis. The symptoms gets worse and treatment is late.

With Urisens, data collection happens wirelessly and immediately, using a low cost printed sensor system embedded in a diaper. Urinary data and artificial intelligence (AI) assisted analysis generates clinically useful information rapidly, reducing caregiver time spent on patient and other clinical resources. The joint parties are Aalto University and VTT. Urisens applied technology is built on a strong research foundation backed by a multidisciplinary team consisting of clinical experts, researchers, engineers and industry experts.  The team has solid experience in health technology research and business development.

Contact: Pekka Kettunen, Innovation Advisor (SCI)


The visual sensebuilding tools (Visentools) R2B project develops the concepts, designs, and prototypes of the facilitating application and symbolically explicit artifact sets for visual sensebuilding. During the R2B project, the team with the support of advisors will actively test and develop the method, the artifacts, and the facilitation app with real end users of diverse backgrounds. Founded on the most recent design research and cognitive and social neuroscience, the artifact's sizes, shapes, and colors will be designed to inspire intuitive and playful sensebuilding. The concept and pilot design will be done for the digital facilitator application, and the use of various AI algorithms will be explored. The project aims to establish the readiness for commercialization, produce supportive research for proof of concept and relevance, and prepare the founding of a start-up and a first risk funding round. We have an exceptionally experienced multidisciplinary research and a business-focused team composed of Aalto University faculty from the School of Science, School of Art and Design, and the Innovation support unit, partner companies, and start-up advisors, with strong expertise in artifact design, work design, software development, plastic molding, neuroscience, marketing, scaling start-ups, and organization and strategic management.

Contact: Ilkka Hyytiäinen, Innovation Advisor (SCI)

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