DeepPsy wins CHF 150,000 to enable personalized psychiatric treatment

DeepPsy’s algorithms analyze brainwaves and heart activity data to personalize and optimize treatments based on the individual biological profile of patients with major depressive disorder. The Zurich-based startup will use the CHF 150,000 to certify the product as a medical device so that the technology can be used in clinics and hospitals.

For most mental disorders, especially depression, the decision to choose a particular treatment does not follow an objective marker. Instead, patients go through a prolonged trial-and-error process to find an effective treatment. Physicians decide using their intuition if a patient with depression is treated with medication, psychotherapy, or transcranial magnetic stimulation. If the patient’s condition does not improve, a new treatment is pursued.

DeepPsy brings objectivity to treatments for mental disorders. The startup analyzes brainwaves from an electroencephalogram (EEG) and heart activity from an electrocardiogram (ECG), two non-invasive and safe procedures. The startup’s technology can be accessed by a user-friendly web application: Biological profiles of response and non-response to specific treatments are calculated by scientifically proven algorithms, and the physicians receive a detailed report. Including DeepPsy’s biomarkers into the diagnostic process will significantly lower the time until remission from the disorder, decreasing the patients’ suffering and economic burden.

Approximately 25−30% of the world’s population suffers from a mental illness during their lifetime, with even higher numbers in developed countries. In Germany and Switzerland alone, an estimated 6 million people suffer from depression, making the disorder one of the leading causes of disability and suicidality. By enabling personalized treatment, DeepPsy can bring relief to many people with mental disorders.

DeepPsy was founded by Mateo de Bardeci (Co-CEO) and PD Dr. med. Sebastian Olbrich (Co-CEO). While the startup is currently using its algorithms to stratify the study population during drug development, the next milestone is to certify the product as a medical device to enable the technology to be applied in clinics and hospitals. Therefore, the funding from Venture Kick will be allocated to hiring a professional with dedicated skills in medical device regulation.

“The whole Venture Kick journey pushed us to stay focused on our mission and to structure our efforts. Especially the Venture Kick training sessions helped to understand what is really important to bring a startup idea to life. We are now on the road to accomplish our mission and to improve the way mental disorders are treated,” said DeepPsy co-CEO PD Dr. med. Sebastian Olbrich. Mateo de Bardeci, DeepPsy co-CEO, added: “The Venture Kick journey inspired us to commit to our mission. The community of many startups showed us that solutions for major problems can become a reality. The funds allowed us to cover critical costs, while the coaching sessions helped us identify the priorities to fulfill our vision. With the support of Venture Kick, we are now paving the way for the psychiatry of the 21st century.”

(Press release / SK)
Picture: Mateo de Bardeci (left) and PD Dr. med. Sebastian Olbrich (right)