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Ten finalists have been chosen for the second annual Lyfebulb-Helsinn Innovation Summit & Awards in Oncology

The Award recognizes Patient Entrepreneurs’ innovations for cancer and cancer supportive care using therapeutics, diagnostics, medical devices or healthcare IT tools


Lyfebulb, a patient empowerment platform that connects patients, industry and investors to support user-driven innovation toward solutions in chronic disease, and Helsinn, a Swiss pharmaceutical group focused on building quality cancer care, today announce the names of the ten Patient Entrepreneurs chosen as finalists for the Lyfebulb-Helsinn Innovation Summit & Awards in Oncology.

The following inspirational finalists will compete at the Lyfebulb-Helsinn Innovation Summit, on March 18 and 19, 2019, for two $25,000 grants:

  • Karl Blohm, PhD of SafeHeal SAS
  • Matt De Silva of Notable Labs
  • Carlos Garcia of Welwaze Medical Inc.
  • Philippe Halfon MD, PhD, PharmD of Genoscience Pharma
  • David Hysong of Shepherd Therapeutics
  • Pierluigi Paracchi of Genenta Science
  • Florence Séjourné of Da Volterra
  • Mihir Shah of UE LifeSciences Inc.
  • Ira Spector, PhD of SFA Therapeutics Inc.
  • Maria Zannes of bioAffinity Technologies

The Awards will recognize outstanding Patient Entrepreneurs building groundbreaking companies to advance the prevention, diagnosis, management or care of cancer patients. The finalists represent companies that have been founded by cancer patients, cancer survivors or those with loved ones affected by cancer. A “pitch session” will be held at the summit, where a jury of experts will select the ultimate winners.

“At Lyfebulb, we believe individuals living with a chronic disease have not only unique insights, but also solutions to address needs they identify in their daily lives. We thank and salute each and every Patient Entrepreneur who applied to our Challenge, and we look forward to the highly collaborative two days we will spend with our teams, jury and finalists, who each bring their unique strategy to reducing the burden of living with cancer,”said Dr. Karin Hehenberger, CEO and Founder of Lyfebulb.

Riccardo Braglia, Helsinn Group Vice Chairman and CEO, added,“So many of us are affected by cancer, and bringing new and advanced solutions to the marketplace is at the heart of what the Helsinn Group does. Helsinn and the Helsinn Investment Fund are  committed to positively impacting the patient community by mentoring, partnering, investing in or connecting these innovators as they pursue their entrepreneurial journey and we are delighted to be working with Lyfebulb on this summit and awards for a second year.”

Lyfebulb is a chronic disease-focused, patient empowerment platform that connects patients, industry (manufacturers and payers) and investors to support user-driven innovation. Lyfebulb promotes a healthy, take-charge lifestyle for those affected by chronic disease. Grounded with its strong foundation in diabetes, the company has expanded disease states covered into cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and multiple sclerosis.

See, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Lyfebulb LinkedIn, and Karin Hehenberger LinkedIn.

Helsinn International Services sarl is the Helsinn subsidiary which provides a range of advisory services and strategic activities to the Group and its specific companies. In particular, it acts as the advisory company to Helsinn Investment Fund.

The Helsinn Investment Fund is focused on early-stage investments in areas of high unmet patient need. Backed by the Helsinn Group, and guided by Helsinn’s core values of quality, integrity and respect, Helsinn Investment Fund aims to help companies with innovative technologies to transform new ideas into commercial solutions with the potential to impact health-related quality of life of patients.

Drawing on Helsinn’s over 40 years of investment into research and development and commercial expertise, the investment fund selects companies with technologies in a range of areas including cancer therapeutics and diagnostics, cancer supportive care, metabolic and gastrointestinal disorders, and dermatology conditions.

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Helsinn is a privately owned pharmaceutical group with an extensive portfolio of marketed cancer care products and a robust drug development pipeline. Since 1976, Helsinn has been improving the everyday lives of patients, guided by core family values of respect, integrity and quality. The Group works across pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices and nutritional supplements and has expertise in research, development, manufacture and the commercialization of therapeutic and supportive care products for cancer, pain and inflammation and gastroenterology. In 2016, Helsinn created the Helsinn Investment Fund to support early-stage investment opportunities in areas of unmet patient need. The company is headquartered in Lugano, Switzerland, with operating subsidiaries in Switzerland, Ireland, the U.S., Monaco and China, as well as a product presence in approximately 190 countries globally.

To learn more about Helsinn Group please visit

Helsinn Group Media Contact
Paola Bonvicini

Group Head of Communication
Lugano, Switzerland

Tel: +41 (0) 91 985 21 21

Press Contact for Lyfebulb:
Karin Hehenberger, MD, PhD

CEO & Founder, Lyfebulb,

Tel: + 00 1 917-575-0210