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15 August, 2018 - 13:21 By Tony Quested

Ex-swimmer’s MedTech venture a stroke of genius

When Graeham Douglas was forced to quit competitive swimming because of asthma he turned his personal adversity into a business opportunity which is already thriving in Cambridge.

Arete Medical Technologies Ltd is developing medical diagnostic tests and software for precision management of asthma and COPD and is recruiting fast. Its innovations allow tests that have been used for years by respiratory specialists to be deployed for use in GP surgeries and for self-monitoring. 

Cambridge is a hot-bed for respiratory diagnostic startups. While most of these are focused on developing a new test, Arete is working to get proven tests deployed more widely – and diving deeper into analysing the data from these tests through machine learning, Artificial Intelligence and biomechanics modelling.

Douglas (pictured) tells Business Weekly that wider availability of testing will help identify what sub-types of a disease someone might have so that treatments can be more precisely targeted. Self-monitoring could help predict attacks, keeping people healthier and reducing burden on health services.

Douglas founded Arete out of his frustrations with asthma which forced him to quit the pool where he was making quite a splash. Graeham was captain of the Cambridge University Swim Club while taking his PhD in bioengineering. 

Earlier this year, Arete was successful in securing two grants from Innovate UK to develop its business strategy and software algorithms, with total project values of more than £170k.

The company has filed three patent applications in the past month, covering inventions that enable lung tests to be used more frequently and by more people. 

Douglas says: “Our next steps are to iterate on our existing prototype, business plan and pitch and start on clinical evaluations. Our current team is five and we are looking to add a few positions in the coming months.”

Based at IdeaSpaceCity in Cambridge, Arete is seeking biomedical engineers, data scientists, programmers and business developers. Vacancies can be viewed at

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