A company formed to commercialise innovative respiratory technology, RespirAq, developed by AUT researchers has secured $1.5m of investment from Outset Ventures, Icehouse Ventures, and Cure Kids Ventures.
AUT's Vice-Chancellor, Derek McCormack, says the investment in RespirAq is the largest ever into any AUT-developed technology, and is a major success for the University's commercialisation arm, AUT Ventures.
"RespirAq technology is the result of many years of perseverance and innovation by AUT engineers. It promises to make a real difference to patients requiring respiratory support and the people looking after them, and I'm thrilled the work of our researchers may now be used, not just in New Zealand, but around the world thanks to AUT Ventures."
RespirAq technology is the first fundamentally new medical airway humidification technology in decades. The RespirAq active heated humidifier removes the need for bulky water supply, tubing and sensors, making it a remarkably elegant and compact solution for medical humidification. It was in part enabled due to a change of engineering approach, with lead developer and now RespirAq CEO Dr Sandra Grau Bartual being a chemical engineer. "Medical humidification has traditionally been approached as a physics problem, but the insight behind RespirAq technology was approached as a chemistry problem: how to controllably and efficiently bond and release a large number of water molecules," says Dr Grau Bartual.