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Start-up generation

Adrià Maceira

Co-founder and CEO, CreatSens Health SL

Degree in Biotechnology and Master in Nanoscience from Rovira i Virgili University, Master in Creation and Management of Innovative Technology-Based Companies from the University of Barcelona. He worked as a researcher at a nano-sensor lab at Rovira i Virgili University, where he developed the idea for the start-up he founded and has led since 2017: CreatSens Health.

Adrià Maceira: “If you surround yourself with the right people, when things go wrong, they’ll stick by you”


CreatSens, founded in 2017 as a spin-off of Rovira i Virgili University, is a healthcare technology platform to improve quality of life through decentralized monitoring of significant biomarkers, like creatinine and potassium, which are important in patients with chronic kidney disease. It is based on a paper sensor that yields results in just 5 minutes and helps doctors make an accurate prediction, give an early diagnosis or better prevent chronic kidney disease, either at the doctor’s office or the patient’s home. The company already has a functional prototype that has been validated at Hospital Clinic Barcelona, and it expects to start marketing the device, called Renalyse, in 2021 to hospitals and medical centers in Catalonia. Adrià Maceira, co-founder and CEO of the company, explains how he came up with the idea.

Why did you want to be an entrepreneur?

I didn’t necessary want it, this is just where life has taken me. I studied biotechnology and did an internship at a laboratory. There, I learned that science is basically based on doing studies and publishing results, but not on making anything that can reach the market. That’s why I decided to change paths and did a master in nanoscience, where I had the chance to do an internship with biosensors. That’s when I discovered a type of science that creates more tangible results. After that, I did another master in business, where I had to put together a business plan. I didn’t want to just make something up, publish it and forget about it. So, I spoke with a former colleague from the biosensor lab and created a business plan for a creatinine sensor. And that business plan is what ended up becoming CreatSens.


What is the most important strategic decision you’ve made so far?

To decide who to have by my side. If you surround yourself with the right people, when things go wrong, they’ll stick by you. And that’s very important for the business to move forward.


What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?

Speak with lots of people and get many opinions on your business idea. You’ll fall down many times but, if you speak with many people, at least the landing will be as soft as possible.


And now what? What milestones do you want to achieve in the short term?

There are many in the early days of a start-up. My next milestone will be to get all the technology I have into a product that is available to people, to patients. Otherwise, nothing we are doing makes sense. In this regard, we expect the Renalyse device to hit the market in 2021, at hospitals and medical centers in Catalonia.