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Apr 28

TUW i²c F&I Talk #65: Ana Teresa Freitas (CEO & Co-founder HeartGenetics)

Event Details

Topic: The engineers abroad: adventures of an entrepreneur in the hostile lands of personalized medicine

The Founder & Investor Talks organized by the Innovation Incubation Center (i²c) at TU Wien enable the audience to learn first-hand from experienced founders, investors, and innovators. They share their international experiences, dos and don’ts and lessons learned during inspiring talks and answer questions in interactive Q&A sessions.


More about Ana Teresa Freitas

Ana Teresa Freitas is CEO and Co-founder of HeartGenetics, Genetics and Biotechnology SA, since 2013. Presently HeartGenetics is part of ImpactLab Group. She is also a Full Professor at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Técnico Lisboa (IST), University of Lisbon. She holds a Ph.D. in Computer and Electronic Engineering. She has a degree in Innovation and Entrepreneurship from Católica School of Business and Economics. As a Professor at IST since 1995, she developed the Computational Biology field. Her scientific expertise is in the areas of Bioinformatics, Nutrigenetics, Human genetics, Health Informatics, Algorithms, and Data Mining.

In the context of the Computational Biology field in Europe, she was Vice-chair of the Board for 2017 and Board member (2010-2017) representing Portugal at ESFRI ELIXIR. ELIXIR unites Europe’s leading life science organizations in managing and safeguarding the increasing volume of data being generated by publicly-funded research.


The Talk will focus on the engineers abroad: adventures of an entrepreneur in the hostile lands of personalized medicine.

Personalized medicine is nowadays more than a buzzword, as it has become a vision that can be realized by building tools, interventions, and products tailored to the individual person or patient, based on their predicted response or potential risk of disease.

A field with this description looks like the perfect space for engineers to intervene. This is particularly true if we think that any business around this topic should use digital technologies in order to be scalable and attract investment. Alas, things are not so simple and reality differs from this perception.

In this talk, Ana Teresa Freitas will present the work that, as an engineer, she has been developing at HeartGenetics, in the difficult field of personalized and preventive medicine. She will describe the adventure of moving from academia to the industry and how difficult it is to guarantee the convergence of several key factors: the engineer’s vision of a new medical product, the soundness of the underlying science, the need for patient-oriented medical practice, and, finally, the standardization and process efficiency needed to achieve scale and attract investors.

The When

April 28, 2021
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

The Where


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