HealthTech Startup Mika and pharmaceutical company Recordati Rare Diseases announce partnership

Mika, an international digital therapeutics company, and Recordati Rare Diseases, a global pharmaceutical firm, have initiated a partnership focusing on enhancing treatment for patients with idiopathic Multicentric Castleman's Disease (iMCD).

This collaboration is pivotal in increasing awareness of this life-threatening, incurable disease and providing digital support through Mika's app-based platform, aiming to improve therapy management for iMCD patients.

Castleman's disease, a rare condition, is one of over 1,200 known rare diseases. In the US, nearly 5,000 patients are diagnosed annually with Castleman's disease, though the actual number is believed to be higher. The disease manifests in various forms, all linked to abnormal changes in the lymphatic system. Symptoms range from generalised lymphadenopathy and inflammatory symptoms (fever, night sweats, weight loss) to organomegaly (enlarged liver and/or spleen) and fluid accumulation (edemas, ascites, and/or anasarca). While some forms like unicentric Castleman's disease may progress symptom-free, iMCD is particularly challenging due to malignant lymph node enlargement affecting other organs, making diagnosis complex. Hematologists, oncologists, and pathologists are primarily involved in diagnosing and treating this disease.

Mika and Recordati Rare Diseases have united to enhance the quality of life and therapy outcomes for iMCD patients. Mika, an evidence-based app, has supported over 100,000 cancer patients in Germany and the UK and is certified as a Class IIa medical device under the EU Medical Device Regulation (MDR). It now extends its digital support to iMCD patients. "This is particularly important for rare diseases, as there is little information and few services available for patients. Doctors and medical staff generally have little experience with the disease. With the Mika app, we already support patients with very rare oncological diseases, which are similarly challenging as iMCD," stated Maik Turni, Head of Patient Programs at Mika. Mika offers various features like symptom tracking, medication reminders, relaxation exercises, and dietary tips to aid patients in managing their therapy.

Recordati Rare Diseases focuses on research and treatment of rare diseases like iMCD. "Through the partnership with Mika, we can also strengthen digital support for patients and promote holistic care. Patients have to deal with their disease for life, yet they are often removed from therapy after about six months. Mika gives them the opportunity to engage more with their illness and therapy management. This helps them better assess how they felt after treatment with a therapeutic and whether their condition worsened after therapy was discontinued," explained Dr Michael Kickuth, General Manager DACH at Recordati Rare Diseases Germany.

The collaboration between Mika and Recordati symbolises the synergy between digital solutions and pharmaceutical innovations in enhancing patient lives. "We are very excited about the collaboration. The combination of evidence-based digital support and innovative medications is a significant step forward," said Dr Gandolf Finke, founder and CEO of Mika.