The three NeuroBell co-founders in a nursery with a baby doll in a child's cot.
Dr Mark O’Sullivan, Colm Murphy and Dr Alison O’Shea. Image: David Jones

Cork medtech start-up NeuroBell to hire 12 following funding boost

8 Jan 2024

NeuroBell is growing its team to get its new product on the market in 2025. It is hiring engineers, QA and business development staff.

NeuroBell, an Irish start-up that specialises in the manufacturing of medical devices for newborns, has closed an investment round of €2.1m. The investment will enable the Cork-headquartered company to expand its team and continue developing its products.

Founded by Dr Mark O’Sullivan, Dr Alison O’Shea and Colm Murphy, NeuroBell is a spin-out from University College Cork (UCC) and the Irish Centre for Maternal and Child Health Research (INFANT). It is working on the development of an AI-powered medical device that can detect seizures in babies, thereby reducing the long-term risk of brain injuries.

With the device, NeuroBell is aiming to make it easier to treat tiny patients admitted to the country’s neonatal intensive care units. Brain injuries as a result of a traumatic birth can affect babies’ health in life-altering ways, leading to conditions such as cerebral palsy and epilepsy. NeuroBell estimates that globally up to 2m newborns suffer brain injuries at birth.

Its device is wireless, small and intended to be easy to use. It has been designed as an alternative to the current method of monitoring newborns’ brain activity, which requires devices that are often difficult to operate and need medical staff with specialist training to work them.

In 2024, NeuroBell will be working to secure FDA approval so it can launch the device in the US market. The funding it has secured will go towards clinical trials, quality control, product development and the all-important regulatory approval. The company is aiming to begin commercial sales of the device in 2025.

It will also hire 12 new staff members in Cork. The roles will be in engineering, quality assurance and business development.

O’Sullivan, CEO of NeuroBell, praised the company’s existing staff, describing them as “incredible” and “passionate about using novel technologies” to solve a critical medical need.

Richard Watson, managing partner at Furthr VC, one of the firms that led the funding round, said his team was “highly impressed by the founding team and what they have achieved to date in UCC prior to spinning out”.

NeuroBell’s founders have received awards for their products and work in neonatal care, including the top prize at the 2020 Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise awards. In March of last year, the company bagged commercialisation funding from Enterprise Ireland.

Enterprise Ireland participated in NeuroBell’s most recent funding round, too. As well as FurthrVC, the round included Atlantic Bridge and HBAN MedTech Syndicate. Several private investors also participated.

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Blathnaid O’Dea
By Blathnaid O’Dea

Blathnaid O’Dea joined Silicon Republic in 2021 as Careers reporter, coming from a background in the Humanities. She likes people, pranking, pictures of puffins – and apparently alliteration.

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