Israeli medical tech startup Matricelf, the developer of a personalized platform for autologous regenerative medicine, was named the winner of the Israel final this week of the Startup World Cup 2021, an annual competition created by Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm Pegasus Tech Ventures. The competition made its debut in Israel with Israeli agency Tech It Forward.
Matricelf will now compete against at least 50 other regional finalists from across the world later this year at the Startup World Cup finale in San Francisco for a chance to win a $1 million investment prize. The event is scheduled for November 2021.
Matricelf was one of 10 finalist startups for the Israeli branch of the competition. Second place went to i-BrainTech, a neuro sports AI-based training platform designed to enhance the performance of individual athletes and empower coaches using data insights, and third place was nabbed by Hargol, an Israeli food tech startup developing grasshopper protein lines.
The second- and third-place winners won consulting hours from Tech It Forward and Leumitech, memberships at Google for Startups and the Platform entrepreneurship Hub by TLV Global.
Founded in 2019, Matricelf grew out of Tel Avi University’s technology transfer firm Ramot. The company took part in the development of 3D-printed heart tissues at TAU in the Laboratory for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine headed by Professor Tal Dvir.
Matricelf is working with German pharmaceutical multinational Bayer, through Ramot, to develop a platform to test new cardiology medication for toxicity and efficacy using 3D-printed human hearts over the next few years.
The company also focuses on engineering personalized spinal cord implants to treat paralyzed patients.
”It was a hard competition and I got a lot of inspiration from all the other contestants,” said Asaf Toker, CEO of Matricelf. “I hope that we will bring the trophy to Israel for the first time but more importantly that we will help disabled patients with spinal cord injury walk again.”
Tech It Forward founders Jennifer Elias and Jessica Rosner said: “We could not be more proud to have showcased the 10 startup finalists to the top judges, the Pegasus team, and the international audience of investors. It is clear that these startups represent deep and impactful innovation and the trends of today. We wish them all much success and are very happy for Matricelf and its CEO Asaf Toker.”