Professor Henriette Svarre Nielsen - BioInnovation Institute

Professor Henriette Svarre Nielsen

Early diagnosis of pregnancy loss

Our aim is to develop a diagnostic test that can inform couples after a pregnancy loss to guide relevant actions. The potential of this project is to increase live birth rates and at a low cost.

PI Henriette Svarre Nielsen

Henriette Svarre Nielsen is a specialist in obstetrics and gynecology and an expert in reproduction and recurrent pregnancy loss. Parallel to her clinical and academic career focusing on pathophysiology in reproduction and women’s health, Henriette Svarre Nielsen has successfully founded and chaired Maternity Foundation and co-founded OvaCure. Maternity Foundation aims to save lives in childbirth and develops evidence‐based solutions and is a strong actor within the emerging field of health tech. The Safe Delivery App developed by the Foundation has successfully instructed over 160,000 health care workers in Sub‐Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia.

Co-PI Letizia Amato

Co-PI and responsible for project leadership, operational management, diagnostic assay development, IP and regulatory strategy, business development plan, and investor activities. Letizia has industrial experience in leading the development of diagnostic solutions and bringing them to the market.

Scientific Collaborator Eva Hoffmann

Scientific collaborator in the development of a method for single-cell diagnosing of early fetal diagnosis. Eva Hoffmann’s laboratory is recognized for its technology development with industry partners in reproductive genomics.

Host Institution
Q&A with Principal Investigator Henriette Svarre Nielsen
What have you learned about establishing companies that you can use in academia?

I have learned a lot from developing my academic and clinical career simultaneously as well as from building the NGO Maternity Foundation with an initial team of six women with different backgrounds and competencies. I have worked in Ethiopia and that has taught me how to solve problems in different environments. My clear goal is to work in a global context and help women not only in Denmark but around the world.

How did you develop an eye for potential spinouts or translational projects?

The traditional view of what makes a good translational project in my field of research has not solved the problems that society is experiencing with pregnancy loss. I have been lucky to have some great partners on the translational path in these past years and by combining competencies we have taken clinical problems, investigated different solutions to them and worked on solving them. I have always had an entrepreneurial drive and felt inspired to look at challenges from a new perspective.

What are the most promising technologies or solutions you have seen come out of health tech?

Traditionally, we have seen little in both diagnostics and treatment within women’s reproductive health. I believe we will see more commercial opportunities in this field in the future because technology has evolved and because women and society no longer accept the lack of knowledge, diagnostics and treatments in reproductive diseases and in women’s diseases in general.

“Henriette S. Nielsen is a world-leading expert in pregnancy loss and her team aims to develop new diagnostic tests for unraveling the causes of pregnancy loss. One in four of all established pregnancies is lost and currently, there are no standard diagnostic tests to identify the cause for the loss. The diagnostic tests developed in the project have the potential to reduce unnecessary medical treatment and provide answers to couples desperate to become parents”

Markus Herrgard, Chief Technical Officer, BioInnovation Institute.

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