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ResMed (US) and Ectosense (Flanders) to fight sleep apnea

Around the world, more than 900 million people suffer from sleep apnea – many of whom remain undiagnosed. The NightOwl test by Ectosense, a spin-off company of strategic research center imec in Flanders, is a game changer because of its ability to detect sleep apnea in one night. ResMed already had a minority share since last year, but now takes full control.

First step towards a better night’s sleep

How does NightOwl work? The idea is as simple as it is ingenious: you place a small piece of medical equipment on your forehead or fingertip, you go to sleep, and in the morning a mobile app tells you if treatment is necessary by means of a report on, among other things, your respiration and oxygen saturation. This swift detection method is a first step in giving millions of people a better night’s sleep, because once detected, apnea can be treated with a special pressure mask or a mouth brace.

FDA-approved test

ResMed started distributing the cloud-connected home sleep apnea test in 2020 under the name onesleeptest. The first markets were India, New Zealand, and Australia, while people in several European countries also have access to the test.

Important to know: NightOwl is commercialized in the US as well, where it was approved by the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA), opening up an enormous market. To fully utilize the potential, ResMed decided to upgrade its minority share into a complete acquisition.

High ambitions

To acquire Ectosense, ResMed had to buy out a local and a British investment fund, as well as imec, Ectosense’s founders, and some private investors. Now that the deal is finalized, ResMed shares its ambitions.

“Ectosense’s home sleep apnea test enables us to help millions of people improve their overall health.”
Jim Hollingshead, ResMed President of Sleep and Respiratory Care

“Ectosense’s digital and easy-to-use solutions can help significantly increase diagnoses, as well as general awareness of this highly prevalent, 100% treatable disease,” asserts Jim Hollingshead, ResMed President of Sleep and Respiratory Care. “This will help expand our reach and identify the 936 million people around the globe who have sleep apnea.”

Learn more about digital innovation in Flanders.

More info

Reported by
De Tijd newspaper
26 October 2021

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