S1E5: 'Meet the Innovators' - Colm McGarvey, co-founder and CEO, Selio Medical

“Sealing the Deal with Lung Biopsies”

By Kayleen Brown, Executive Editor, MedTech Strategist Broadcasting Network


Meet Colm McGarvey. Colm is co-founder and CEO of Selio Medical, a Dublin-based medical device start-up developing a novel technology to prevent pneumothorax, a common, costly, and sometimes deadly complication of lung biopsy impacting one in three patients. In addition to improving patient quality of care, Colm believes the treatment could lead to “significant cost savings in the healthcare system,” upwards of €1 billion globally ($1.17 billion).

Colm’s interest in technology stemmed from his youth, but it was his personal experience with cancer in the family that strengthened his “passion to develop a technology that would help patients’ lives.” Inspired by Ireland’s most notable medtech leaders, such as Paul Gilson of Novate and MedNova and Eamon Brady of Neuravi, Colm was determined to solve an unmet clinical need.

Colm met Co-Founder and Biomedical Engineer Garrett Ryan in 2014 during their BioInnovate Ireland fellowship. Together, they observed a failed lung biopsy and learned that existing interventions focus on deploying an adhesive or plug in the biopsy needle path, only after the biopsy procedure takes place. The dynamic duo then realized that “there’s a better way of doing this… why don't we try and solve this problem right at the start, before it actually happens.”

Thus, Selio’s revolutionary approach and preventative smart-needle technology were conceived. Selio’s single-use device and novel Hydro Gel pre-seals the access route into the lung. The biopsy is then carried out through an airtight seal, preventing air leaks from the lung, either during or after the procedure. With over one million lung biopsy procedures carried out globally per annum, Colm thinks the device could prevent more than 350,000 cases of lung collapse annually.

Selio Medical is primed for success after winning the 2017 MedTech Innovator International Pitch Competition that took place at MedTech Strategist’s 2017 Innovation Summit Dublin, Ireland, a global medical device investment and networking conference; and receiving the HeadStart Proof-of-Concept Award by EIT Health. Having raised €530,000 ($619K) in non-dilutive grant funding, the team is finalizing an initial Series A fundraising which will bring the technology through FDA and CE mark submissions by 2021. Additionally, the team is the midst of arranging a first in-man clinical study, which they intend to do by 2019.

From the entire MedTech Strategist team, we offer Colm, and the entire Selio Medical team, congratulations and best of luck!


Have comments on this post, or suggestions for topics you’d like us to cover in the Community Blog? Email us: blog@medtechstrategist.com.

Further Reading in MedTech Strategist:

  • Interventional Pulmonology – “Image-Guided Lung Biopsy: Aiming For a Stage Shift in Lung Cancer Diagnosis,” by Mary Thompson

  • Start-Ups To Watch: Lung Cancer – “ProLung: Risk Stratification Test for Lung Cancer,” by Mary Stuart

  • Start-Ups To Watch – “Adhesys Medical: Sealing the Deal with a Platform of Improved Surgical Sealants,” by Mary Stuart


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