Team Kilo develops lighting technology to aid stabilization and growth of NICU babies

Via the Rochester Business Journal
June 12, 2020

Kilo Medical Solutions is a medical startup that developed a product that can be hooked up to incubators to control lighting for infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). The technology is called Brise-Solette, and it consists of a system of films used to imitate a womb-like optical environment to improve the health of babies born prematurely, while preventing them from being exposed to bright lights in the NICU. 

The company, based in Richmond, Va., is one of 10 finalist companies in the optics, imaging and photonics industry selected to work within the Luminate NY accelerator. The $25 million accelerator program — which is funded by the Finger Lakes Forward Up- state Revitalization Initiative and administered by NextCorps — provides each finalist with an immediate investment of $100,000 and months of support to heighten the speed of the commercialization of their technologies and businesses. On Demo Day in September, the startups will compete for up to $2 million in follow-on funding. 

“Light can be a tremendous resource within health care settings, dramatically impacting the treatment and outcomes of patients. Kilo Medical Solutions is harnessing this potential to solve a very real problem in neonatal care,” said Sujatha Ramanujan, managing director of Luminate. “Our region, with its extensive universities, hospital systems and photonics cluster provides startups such as Kilo with an ecosystem to rapidly develop, test and iterate light-focused technologies that can save lives.” 

In the U.S., one in 10 babies is born prematurely. Currently, fabric covers are used to control light conditions for babes in the NICU, but the fabric covers pose safety and sanitary issues that make it difficult for infants to establish their circadian rhythm, gain weight and stabilize vitals. 

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