Finnish press release November 20, 2019: https://www.novartis.fi/news/media-releases/novartis-globaaliin-yhteistyoehoen-suomalaisten-precordiorin-ja-popitin-kanssa

Novartis has entered global collaboration agreement with the Finnish startup Precordior. The goal of the collaboration with Precordior is to further develop and deploy technology that detects symptoms of heart disease using a smartphone.

Novartis, as a global healthcare company, is part of an ecosystem where digitalization is advancing fast. Collaboration with innovative health technology startups such as Precordior enables new ways to provide patients with effective care faster and also more efficiently for society. At the same time, innovation in the health sector supports economic growth and creates more exports and jobs in Finland and Europe. 

Precordior: A standard smartphone recognizes heart symptoms

Novartis and Precordior’s collaboration concerns identifying heart failure. The technology under development is intended for measuring heart failure with a smartphone and takes just a minute.

“Heart disease can be dangerously asymptomatic – nearly 90% of people with heart failure don’t recognize their symptoms well, and that’s why there is a real need for our application,” says Juuso Blomster, a cardiologist and CEO of Precordior.

Precordior’s application uses sensors found on most modern smartphones. When the smartphone is set to the chest, it measures heart movement. The collected data is analyzed in the cloud using methods that utilize machine learning. The global collaboration can promote the use and export of Precordior’s technology and help those suffering from heart disease to recognize their symptoms and receive timely treatment.

Precordior’s CardioSignal app already recognizes atrial fibrillation, which often precedes cerebral circulatory disorders. Recognizing the condition can help prevent stroke. With the app, everyone can follow their heart independently, and it is also used in home care.

Data and digital technologies can advance the development of new treatments

Novartis has also entered a collaboration with another Finnish startup, Popit. Their solution consists of a device and an application and can help improve patient adherence.

”It is in everyone’s best interest that the right patient is given the right treatment at the right time. This requires fast identification of symptoms, but also a patient’s commitment to treatment,” says Antti Viitanen. 

New technologies and digitalization make the development of new operational models possible. Currently, more health data is being collected and used than ever before. Utilizing it has become part of disease prevention, but it may help to provide more targeted treatment to the right patients faster. 

”The collaboration between Novartis, Precordior and Popit is an example of how a small company from the superb Finnish startup scene can scale up to a global level with the help of an international partner. Also, the Finnish health sector growth strategy has been a key in creating an ecosystem where innovations like this can thrive and increase wellbeing,” says Antti Viitanen. ”The global collaborations stems from last year when a group of Finnish startups together with Business Finland and the Finnish Ministry of Social Affairs and Health visited Novartis’ head office in Basel.”

Health data and technology as well as expertise in their use, are needed to develop new, targeted and effective treatments and provide these to the right patient. At Novartis, the use of digital technologies and data is an integral part of drug development, from early molecular simulation to clinical trials and data analysis. For example, clinical studies already carried out have accumulated about two million patient-years of data. Advanced data analysis techniques can reveal new insights into diseases or medication responses.

About Novartis

Novartis is reimagining medicine to improve and extend people’s lives. As a leading global medicine company, we use innovative science and digital technologies to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. In our quest to find new medicines, we consistently rank among the world’s top companies investing in research and development. Novartis products reach more than 750 million people globally and we are finding innovative ways to expand access to our latest treatments. About 109,000 people of more than 140 nationalities work at Novartis around the world. Find out more at www.novartis.com.