Spotlight On: Protecting the Kidneys in Hospitalized Patients

About a third of patients hospitalized for heart failure suffer from kidney injury which results in worse outcomes and higher costs of hospitalized care.  When the heart cannot pump enough blood to meet the body’s demands, it impairs kidney function.  This leads to kidney injury, longer stays in the hospital and critical care units, higher hospital readmission rates, and death.

Nephera is developing a treatment to prevent kidney injury in hospitalized patients.

Robert Bash, CEO of Nephera, explains why the Nephera catheter represents a breakthrough for patients with heart failure.

The Nephera device

The Nephera device

How did the idea for your company develop?

It was clear from the medical literature that kidney injury resulted from poor blood supply.  The question was how to improve blood flow in these patients with heart failure.  The founders of the company thought to enhance blood flow by controlling the nerves that innervate the kidneys’ blood vessels.  And, the real originality was the idea that those nerves could be controlled by stimulating a reflex in the urinary tract.

Why do you personally care about your company’s product? 

There are no currently acceptable treatment options in a hospital setting for deteriorating renal function.  Nephera can become the leading therapeutic modality for protecting the kidneys and treating patients with acute heart failure or post-cardiac surgery kidney injury.  This represents a very exciting clinical opportunity.

Why should the market care about the solution you are developing?

Hospitals lose money treating patients with kidney dysfunction.  We can save hospitals money by dramatically improving patient care.

What advice do you have for a new entrepreneur with a great idea?

Your job is to create value for your shareholders.  It’s the execution (not just the “great idea”) which creates that value.  To do this, you’ll need to partner with an investor (like Trendlines) that provides the financing and also the insight, experience, and network to help you execute effectively.

As you know, the Trendlines mission is “creating companies that improve the human condition”. How is your company doing this?

It is a great privilege to work on providing a new treatment for a challenging medical problem.  I can think of no better way to improve the human condition than by bringing to market a new treatment for kidney injury.

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