The researchers won a grant from the EIT Health EIT Knowledge and Innovation Community program that spotlights research on healthy aging. The Medical University of Łódź is a Polish partner in the program.
The wearable textile band is expected to monitor the level of hydration in physically active people, young children, and seniors who tend to experience less thirst as they age. MyHYDRO is a novel solution that combines textiles, electronics and medicine. Testing of the prototype of the device in a group of patients is to start shortly, whereas production is expected to start within three years.
The invention that originates from Lodz University of Technology has been recognized many times to date. In July 2016, it was awarded an InnoStars Award; in August, it was awarded the first prize in the International Jury of InnoStars Award Competition in the category of digital health in the InnoStar Region of Poland, Hungary, Italy, Wales and Portugal. The two innovators also qualified for the international program Business Plan Aggregator in Barcelona where they went last November to pitch their idea and build up business contacts.
Dr inż. Magda Owczarek looks back on how it all started: Everything started with the first edition of TUL’s Interdisciplinary School of Innovation (ISI)in 2013. I already had an idea for a project when I took part in the ISI. I gathered together eight people, and as a team we got the highest score at the end of the second stage of the School. Dr inż. Przemysław Sękalski, director of the Center for Information Technology, TUL, was the team’s mentor.
Currently, thanks to the EIT Health grant, a technology company has been started up with TUL. A utility model application has been filed in Poland, and trademark application has been filed for myHYDRO name and logo in Europe. Another prototype is being developed at the moment, at an external company, also a technology company of one of TUL’s employees, dr inż. Kamil Grabowski. Tests in athletes are being planned to be performed at DynamoLab, a company of the Medical University of Łódź.
The two women innovators from TUL have taken care to promote the project. We had a professional video spot made to present the issue of hydration and our product, myHYDRO. We also had an opportunity to present our idea on the radio. Two movies were also made: one for the Polish Press Agency and the other for Barcelona, explains Ewelina Pabjańczyk-Wlazło. Currently, we are in the process of searching for funds to finance further growth’