French BrightHeart Closes €2M Seed Financing from Sofinnova Partners to Improve the Detection of Fetal Heart Abnormalities

Paris-based medtech company BrightHeart has raised €2 million in seed financing from Sofinnova Partners, to bolster the development of the BrightHeart technology, prepare its regulatory submission(s), and facilitate the company’s expansion.

Combined with unique access to a proprietary database of more than 20,000 fetal ultrasound exams, BrightHeart’s innovative technology leverages AI and top-level expertise in fetal ultrasound cardiac imaging to help caregivers improve the detection of complex fetal heart defects in utero, during an ultrasound screening exam, when early interventions could either correct them or greatly improve a child’s chance of survival. This is the fourth investment by Sofinnova’s medtech acceleration fund, Sofinnova MD Start III.

Cécile Dupont, BrightHeart’s Chief Executive Officer and Partner at Sofinnova Partners, said:” Fetal ultrasound screening of the heart is universally recommended during pregnancy. Prenatal diagnosis of fetal heart defects can significantly improve newborn outcomes, but in practice, as few as 30% are detected. BrightHeart’s unique, AI-powered approach has the potential to revolutionize screening for congenital heart defects by supporting clinicians with a real-time, expert-level interpretation of one of the most complex exams in the ultrasound practice.”

BrightHeart has already brought together an experienced team in the fields of fetal cardiology, AI, and software development. This unique group is led by Chief Technology Officer Christophe Gardella, an accomplished data scientist and leader with extensive experience in the development of AI-powered medtech solutions who directed the algorithm efforts at Cardiologs.

Inspired by the company’s mission, the multidisciplinary team has made remarkable progress. Just a few months after its inception, the company is already finalizing a first version of its software, filed multiple patent applications in Europe and the U.S., engaged with regulators, and is actively working on the preparation of regulatory submissions for its first product in key geographies.

BrightHeart builds on an idea by Dr. Marilyne Levy and Dr. Bertand Stos, BrightHeart co-founders, fetal cardiologists, and leading experts in the sector. They bring a world-class expertise to the project as well as a large, qualified database of fetal heart ultrasound exams.

In a joint statement, Drs. Levy and Stos said: “BrightHeart’s innovative approach addresses a major critical need. We are thrilled to count on operational, strategic, and financial support from Sofinnova MD Start III in this important commitment to accelerate the deployment of our technology in the clinic, and to improve maternal and fetal health.”

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