Encapcell Technologies is a medical startup based in Montreal, Canada. Our mission is to redefine how dialysis treatments are being conducted in order to improve patient health outcomes and meet their needs with our proprietary blood filtration technology.
The kidney’s main responsibility is to clean blood. Our kidneys filter about 150 liters of blood per day and produce approximately one liter of urine. Renal failure occurs when the kidney filtration rate drops to a significant extent from their normal function. Kidney failure can be acute, such as in a crush injury, or chronic, when a patient’s renal function deteriorates over time.
The incidence of kidney failure has increased in recent years, partially due to an increase in obesity, hypertension and diabetes, where patients have a higher risk of developing chronic kidney disease (CKD). There are five stages of CKD: in the early stages, patients are usually asymptomatic, which makes early detection very challenging. As the condition progresses, patients reach the final stage called end stage renal disease (ESRD) and must undergo one of the three treatment options to replace the function of their kidneys.
Current renal replacement therapies (RRT) include hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis or transplantation. Since the body’s blood filtration mechanism is disrupted, patients start accumulating solutes in the blood, which become toxic unless dialysis is performed. For instance, there is an increase in secondary metabolites, proteins and other molecules that significantly increase patient mortality and morbidity.
Hemodialysis is the most common form of RRT, used by approximately 90% of patiets. This method consists of using an external machine to filter blood. Patients have to go to a dialysis center three times a week for treatment.
Peritoneal dialysis is another form of dialysis that filters blood using the abdominal caviy. This method enables the patient to self-administer, however, many patients are not good candidates for this treatment.
A renal transplant is the optimal solution for kidney failure. However, there are not enough kidney donors for the amount of patients with kidney failure. Also, not all kidney failure patients are candidates for a transplant.
Our scientists are currently developing a nanostructured polymer material that will serve as the basis of our filtration technology. By assembling specific molecular nanostructures on a polymer support, the material will gain specific proprieties that are directly applicable to extracorporeal treatments of various diseases, including kidney failure. Using the principles of hemoperfusion, the technology will allow us to increase the clerance of specific blood solutes and the portability of our dialysis machine.
We have an interdisciplinary team with backgrounds in science, engineering and business.
Co-Founder & CEO
Co-Founder & COO
Co-Founder & CTO
Radu Alexandru Paun
Co-Founder & CSO
We are backed by a group of advisors with backgrounds in medical technology and healthcare business.
President at Ellicom
Over 20 years of experience in leadership roles for various companies, including A.D.A.M. Health (Vice-President), Taimma Communications (CEO & Founder) and IC Axon (Vice President).
Dr. Mark Driscoll, P.Eng, PhD
Professor at McGill University
Biomedical engineer with extensive experience in bringing medical devices to market. Dr. Driscoll is currently an Executive Board Member of Spinologics Inc., a company that he founded.
Dr. Murray Vasilevsky, MD
Nephrologist, Montreal General Hospital (MGH)
With over 30 years of experience in nephrology, Dr.Vasilevsky is the Clinical Site Director at the MGH. He has experience in clinical trials for dialysis patients and in caring for remote dialysis patients.
Dr. Mark Lipman, MD
Chief of the Division of Nephrology, Jewish General Hospital
As an active researcher in various fields of nephrology, Dr. Mark Lipman is the Senior Investigator at the Lady Davis Institute, and an Associate Professor at McGill’s Faculty of Medicine.