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7 Startups for Prostate Health

In the U.S. alone, about 174,650 new cases of prostate cancer will have been diagnosed in 2019 and around 31,620 people will have died from the disease

Adi Pick and Elham Nasser Eddin 18:1403.11.19
When it comes to men’s health, one cannot get far without discussing the prostate, the walnut-sized gland that is part of the male reproductive system.

Prostate cancer is the fourth most common type of cancer worldwide and the second most common cancer in men, according to the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Most people diagnosed with prostate cancer survive, but when untreated or diagnosed too late, the disease can also be fatal.

 

The American Cancer Society estimates that about 174,650 new cases of prostate cancer will have been diagnosed in 2019 and around 31,620 people will have died from the disease in the U.S. alone.

 

Unrelated to prostate cancer is a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, that often causes urination problems in older men. By age 85, 90% of the male population will have BPH, according to a 2019 report by Harvard Health.

 

In honor of Men’s Health Awareness Month taking place annually in November, listed below are seven Israel-based startups focused on prostate health.
Men's health doctor (illustration). Photo: Shutterstock Men's health doctor (illustration). Photo: Shutterstock

 

Medi-Tate

Founded: 2007

Funding: $30 million

Founder: Ido Kilemnik

 

Medi-Tate Ltd. develops medical devices to relieve symptoms of benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH), also known as prostate enlargement. The company’s devices are inserted in a short, non-invasive procedure, and are placed in the prostatic urethra, where the device pushes obstructive tissue aside, reshaping the prostate.

 

 

ProArc Medical

Founded: 2010

Funding: $7 million

Founder: Yair Feld

 

ProArc Medical Ltd. develops medical devices to alleviate urinary tract side effects caused by BPH. The company’s signature device, which consists of an implant in the shape of an open ring, is placed in the enlarged prostate tissue just under the urethral surface to expand the obstructed area while avoiding contact with urine.

 

 

Nucleai

Founded: 2017

Funding: $5 million

Founders: Avi Veidman, Lotan Chorev, Eliron Amir

 

Nucleai Ltd. develops software that uses computer vision and machine learning algorithms to detect signs of prostate cancer and gastrointestinal diseases. Nucleai’s technology is designed to make the work of pathologists more efficient, reduce errors, and shorten patients’ waiting time for a diagnosis, according to company statements. The company’s software also factors in information drawn from patients’ medical records and genomics data.

 

 

Keren Medical

Founded: 2007

Funding: $600,000

Founders: Jack Baniel, Eyal Bressler, Eliahu Eliachar, Dan Sadeh Hochstadter, Ofer Yossepiwitch

Keren Medical's device. Photo: Keren Medical Ltd. Keren Medical's device. Photo: Keren Medical Ltd.
Keren Medical Ltd. develops a surgical instrument that helps practitioners accurately complete anastomosis, a surgical cross-connection between the bladder and the urethra. The company’s device is disposable and automatically installs and fixates a number of absorbable sutures between the urethral stump and the bladder neck.

 

 

Ibex

Founded: 2016

Funding: $11 million

Founders: Joseph Mossel, Chaim Linhart

Ibex co-founders, chief medical officer and chief strategy officer. Photo: PR Ibex co-founders, chief medical officer and chief strategy officer. Photo: PR
Ibex Medical Analytics Ltd. develops a diagnostic system that incorporates computer vision, electronic medical records, and machine learning to deliver a more reliable cancer diagnosis. The company’s Second Read system was deployed in March 2018 at Maccabi Healthcare Services throughout Israel to detect misdiagnosed prostate biopsies.

 

 

UC-CARE

Founded: 2004

Funding: $15 million

Founders: Shaike Schatzberger

 

UC-Care Medical Systems Ltd. develops diagnostic tools that aim to improve the timeliness of prostate cancer diagnosis and the treatment of such cancer. The company’s technology works together with ultrasound systems to better detect tumors and track even minor changes in them.

 

 

Butterfly Medical

Founded: 2014

Founders: Adrian Paz, Yehuda Bachar

 

Butterfly Medical Ltd. develops an implantable medical device designed to assist in the treatment of BPH. The company's device is inserted by cystoscopy and dilates the prostate urethra, enabling doctors to treat and operate prostate enlargements without making surgical incisions. The company currently has a clinical trial underway in four Israeli hospitals, according to company statements.

 

This article has been amended. A previous version of this article made a direct link between BPH and prostate cancer.

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