Tales from the Trenches: Jeff Aronin of Marathon Pharma

Jeff Aronin, CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals, was a featured guest in MATTER’s Tales from the Trenches series. Marathon develops, manufactures, and commercializes drugs for patients with rare diseases, also called “orphan drugs”. Before founding Marathon, Aronin served as CEO of Ovation Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Lundbeck for $900M in 2009. He and ContextMedia CEO Rishi Shah discussed how he got into healthcare; his work, management, and investment style; and pharmaceutical industry trends and challenges. View the entire interview or read our summary below.

RishiAroninAronin discovered his passion for pharmaceuticals while shadowing a physician. The doctor was treating an epileptic pediatric patient having regular seizures. The doctor had few options to stop the seizures other than to remove a portion of the child’s brain. When the doctor mentioned this surgical option to the patient’s family, they were devastated, afraid their child would have developmental issues. As a last resort, the doctor gave the child medication to curb his seizures, which — remarkably — worked, so the child was able to avoid the disruptive and potentially life-altering surgery. Watching the family’s relief and celebration, all thanks to the drug, Aronin had found what he wanted to do with his life.

Jeff chose to build and run small to mid-size pharma companies rather than large ones, because big pharma companies:

  • Have a difficult time moving as quickly as smaller, more agile companies.
  • Face pressure to focus on conditions that affect larger numbers of patients, thereby driving up development costs and competitive risks.

Aronin gave similar investment advice as other entrepreneurs who have been featured in our Tales from the Trenches series: he invests in talented people who are solving real problems, and believes everything else will fall into place. He also stressed that while capital structure is important to healthcare ventures, the customer population should define a firm’s strategy, not the capital.

20151118_CloudSpotter_MATTER-21 (1)According to Aronin, “The single most important thing you do as an entrepreneur is hire your team.” He went on to say that the first 10-20 employees of a startup are arguably more risk-tolerant than founders, because they are quitting more stable jobs to chase someone else’s dream. He also advocates having extensive conversations with a prospective employee’s references, to triangulate his or her capabilities and workstyle.

Rishi asked Jeff why, after selling Ovation, did he decide to use the same business model again with Marathon? Why not go after a new challenge? To Jeff, the answer was self-evident: once he had found a profitable way to improve health outcomes for patients with rare diseases, he never wanted to do anything else.

The next event in our Tales from the Trenches series will be on January 21 at MATTER from 6–8pm, featuring Dr. Griffin Myers, founder of Oak Street Health.

Hal Barron of Calico’s Keynote at MATTER

Hal Barron of Calico at MATTERHal Barron, president of research and development for Calico, began his presentation Monday with a discussion of Calico’s lofty mission: to “increase understanding of the biology that controls lifespan.” While this goal seems grandiose, Barron takes a reasoned approach, encouraging analysis on a long timeline, rather than looking for quick-hitting, short-term wins. This brought Hal to the first major theme of his presentation: smart risk-taking.

He gave a few famous examples of taking smart risk:

Hal Barron of Calico at MATTER – NFL

  • New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick’s famous decision to “go for it” on 4th and 2 from his own 28 yard line in a 2009 game against the Indianapolis Colts. While Belichick’s decision did not produce a positive outcome and the Patriots lost the game, Barron defended Belichick’s decision as a smart risk, citing analytical sportswriter David Romer.
  • Comedian Chris Rock will often try out new material in small comedy clubs in his local New Jersey suburb. The prolific comedian’s jokes fall flat so often that he has been asked to refund audience members’ money more than once! But Chris Rock is taking smart risk in alienating a small crowd in New Jersey in order to perfect routines he will perform for millions.

These examples underscore Barron and Calico’s approach toward biotech research: that a good decision does not always translate to a good result, and the fear of failure, often compounded by incentives that value short-term success, holds back scientific breakthroughs. Like Belichick and Rock, Calico partners AbbVie and Google look to foster a focus on long-term gains by calculating the risk/reward ratio of a given scenario. When asked about exciting innovations in his field, Barron mentioned CRISPR, a technology that allows researchers to directly edit the genes of an organism’s offspring, opening the door for significant headway into genetic research.

Barron advocates the same approach he takes with Calico toward an entrepreneur’s career: if you care about your job, make good decisions, and push yourself, then initial results do not matter. Barron applies his reasoned approach to failure toward success as well: he downplays Calico’s progress while intentionally striving to make the firm leaner. Hal quoted David Packard in saying that “more companies die of indigestion than starvation,” meaning that many try to accomplish too many projects, rather than perfect a few. He encourages companies to ask themselves what the least important project they’re working on is, and what the chance is it’s going to matter for their company in the long run. If it won’t, he encourages managers to “trim the fat” and not pursue projects that won’t move the needle over a company’s lifespan.

Many thanks to Hal and his sister, Northwestern Law Professor Esther Barron, who moderated the conversation, and to everybody who came for the event.Hal Barron of Calico at MATTER with Northwestern Law's Esther Barron

American Medical Association and MATTER Extend Partnership

AMA Interaction Studio at MATTER opens to enhance collaboration, expand connections with entrepreneurs and physicians nationwide

CHICAGO – The American Medical Association (AMA) partnership with MATTER reached a new phase today to enhance support for startup companies seeking to have a transformational impact on health and medicine. This milestone was marked as the newly installed AMA Interaction Studio at MATTER opened to facilitate connections between entrepreneurs and physicians.

Since the AMA-MATTER partnership was launched in February, hundreds of physicians have either visited MATTER or offered insight and feedback to entrepreneurs working on early stage technologies and solutions that promise to improve the health of the nation. In addition, the partnership has brought physicians and entrepreneurs together for a variety of educational workshops, interactive simulations and collaboration events focused on optimizing health care.

The AMA Interaction Studio helps entrepreneurs to collaboratively interact with a growing AMA network of physicians from all corners of the country, both in person and remotely. As shown in this video, the facility provides a unique technological test bed for optimizing new products in multiple, simulated medical settings.

“Physicians and entrepreneurs are both passionate about transforming health care, and by working in tandem they can advance innovations that make the health system work better for everyone,” said AMA CEO and Executive Vice President James L. Madara, M.D. “The capabilities of the AMA Interaction Studio allow entrepreneurs to connect, in person and virtually, with a broad range of physicians to get a deeper understanding of the key challenges in patient care that can be resolved with advances in new technology.”

“It is incredibly valuable for healthcare entrepreneurs to have access to physicians as they build their products, technologies and businesses,” said MATTER CEO Steven Collens. “The AMA Interaction Studio enables entrepreneurs and clinicians to collaborate with each other in a real-world, technology enabled environment to accelerate the development of meaningful new solutions to improve health and healthcare.”

“The AMA Interaction Studio is going to be tremendously helpful in connecting entrepreneurs and AMA physicians from around the country,” said Scott Vold, founder and CEO of Fibroblast, a MATTER member company. “Being able to interact with physicians, show them our solution and get their feedback is going to streamline our entire testing and production processes.”

The AMA Interaction Studio creates unique learning experiences and simulations using cutting-edge technology, including advanced video and audio technologies, next generation exam room equipment, immersive 3D projections and virtual holographic displays. The architecture firm HDR led the design of the approximately 450-square-foot space, while Turner Construction served as the general contractor.

Furniture for the space was contributed by Herman Miller and cutting-edge exam room equipment was provided by Midmark. The significant technology needs for the facility were conceived by Johnson Controls and Rex Electric & Technologies and were fulfilled with the help of contributions from ContextMedia and HP.

# # #

Media Contacts:

Robert J. Mills
AMA Media & Editorial
(312) 464-5970

Melissa Lederer
(312) 543-9537


About the AMA
The American Medical Association is the premier national organization dedicated to empowering the nation’s physicians to continually provide safer, higher quality, and more efficient care to patients and communities. For more than 165 years the AMA has been unwavering in its commitment to using its unique position and knowledge to shape a healthier future for America. For more information, visit ama-assn.org.


MATTER is a community of entrepreneurs, innovators and industry leaders working together to harness technology to improve health and healthcare. MATTER connects and promotes collaboration between entrepreneurs, scientists, physicians, investors and industry partners in order to bring next-generation products and services to market that improve quality of care and save lives. For more information, visit www.matterchicago.com and follow @matterchicago.




Innovation Diffusion: Q&A With MATTER CEO Steven Collens on Chicago’s Health Tech Scene

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Published October 11, 2015 health.oliverwyman.com

Tomorrow the third annual Oliver Wyman Health Innovation Summit kicks off with immersion tours exploring how some of host city Chicago’s most innovative organizations are transforming the health market. One stop will be MATTER and 1871, both leading hubs for tech innovators. MATTER and 1871 executives will be joined by a team from provider-led accelerator AVIA to introduce their operations and explain the role that design can play in fostering effective collaboration and innovation. MATTER CEO Steven Collens, who also led the team that created 1871, gave Oliver Wyman’s Terrance Wallace a preview of his center for digital startups that now houses more than 300 early-stage companies:

  • What is the mission of MATTER?
  • Our mission is to accelerate the development of healthcare technology and create an ecosystem to support healthcare companies that will change the world. This is an incredibly dynamic time for innovation in healthcare. Several factors have combined to heighten the need for innovation within the industry and to create big opportunities for entrepreneurs, including advances in technology that allow for more innovative collection, storage, and analysis of data; the digitization of the healthcare industry that has been driven by the proliferation of electronic medical health records; and policy mandates that are forcing a change in the business model of healthcare from volume to value. The challenge in healthcare now is that the system is very complicated and esoteric. It’s a challenging environment through which to build a new business. The theory behind MATTER is that we can equip and embolden leaders within institutions to collaborate and design new solutions together. That’s why we have such an emphasis not only on startups, but also on industry partners. We have a robust learning curriculum and a variety of mentoring programs for our companies, but we also work really hard to create an ecosystem of business partners, investors, and others that aspire to bring change to healthcare.
  • Where are you based? How has the area supported your development?
  • We’re based in Chicago’s Merchandise Mart. Chicago has an amazing collection of healthcare assets and expertise. Just being in Chicago is a huge advantage. We have world-leading companies across every sector within the industry: pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, devices, hospital supply providers, payers, and more. There isn’t another region in the entire country that has such a breadth and diversity of healthcare companies. We also have most of the major industry associations based here. We have phenomenal research institutions, medical schools, business schools, and engineering programs. The challenge for Chicago innovation is that we haven’t much of a functioning community. There isn’t a town square for the healthcare community; there isn’t a nexus for healthcare innovation. We’re changing that. We picked the location in the Merchandise Mart for two reasons: 1) It’s centrally located and iconic: You can say Merchandise Mart and everyone knows what you’re talking about. It’s on top of public transportation, it’s right across from the financial center, and it anchors the River North neighborhood; 2) In the last three years, Merchandise Mart has really emerged as the tech hub of the city. You have 1871 leading digital innovation, Motorola Mobility moved into the building, GoHealth, Braintree, Yelp—all of these companies have significant presence in the Merchandise Mart and create opportunities for collisions with people who are thinking outside the box and driving innovation.
  • What has been your most recent milestone achievement?
  • We currently have 110 companies at MATTER. That’s a big accomplishment. We opened in mid-February 2015 with about 30 companies. We’ve grown at a very fast clip even with a rigorous application process. We also continue to develop relationships with industry partners and sign up new companies that really have an interest in accelerating innovation. Business partners view MATTER as a channel for ideas, technology, and inspiration for solutions that will help their business and drive meaningful change in healthcare. We’re creating a community for healthcare technology and innovation that didn’t exist before in Chicago.
  • What projects and partnerships are you working on now?
  • I was recently meeting with some of the leadership from Chicago-based Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), one of our newest partners. That got me thinking about areas where there is an enormous opportunity to drive meaningful change and outcomes. There are places where care is delivered, places where reimbursement occurs, and places where data is stored. Payers like HCSC are central to the reimbursement equation, but they can also be highly influential in understanding what works and understanding how to influence behaviors that drive better health and wellness. They sit on an enormous amount of data around how care unfolds. They are looking for innovation. They are an established company that’s been around for a long time, and they excel at operationalizing ideas. Their core competency is not disruptive innovation. That’s where the potential to create meaningful change comes in. At MATTER we harness the ability of entrepreneurs to be very nimble in responding to the market and facilitate collaborations with larger companies to drive innovation.
  • This is a really broad question, but what does the future of healthcare look like to you?
  • The future looks great. The healthcare system as a business and as an industry is full of opportunities for innovation to improve. The best kind of industry for an entrepreneur to focus on is one where: 1) The industry is growing; 2) there are lots of inefficiencies baked in; and 3) you’re in an industry where there is an opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the world. The healthcare industry exceeds others on all three of those points. The challenge is that it’s a very complex environment and slow to change, but the opportunities are huge. The opportunity for all of us to live healthier and better is right in front of us.
  • What advice do you have for startup leaders?
  • Entrepreneurs should spend a lot of time with their ultimate customers and stakeholders. Depending of what they are doing it could be doctors, nurses, hospital administrators, payers, pharmaceutical companies, or others. Really approach development of the thesis and the technology from the outside in and solve a really meaningful problem, but solve it in the right way. The solution has to be ingestible by the companies themselves to create lasting change. That’s a pitfall that we try to help companies avoid. You don’t want to solve a point solution that can’t integrate into a workflow or something that missed the mark by 10%.

Tales from the Trenches with Glen Tullman

On Monday, September 28, serial entrepreneur and former Allscripts CEO Glen Tullman spoke at MATTER in the third installment of our Tales from the Trenches series. ContextMedia CEO Rishi Shah interviewed Tullman about his personal drive, current ventures, and business insights. View the entire interview or read our summary below.

Here’s what we learned about Glen:

  • He doesn’t sleep much. “Why would anyone want to sleep when there are so many exciting things to do in life?”
  • He listens to 2-3 e-books per week (at 2x speed because it’s more efficient).
  • He subscribes to 35 magazines, which he scans to look for cross-industry trends.
  • Once, when running a marathon with a business partner, Glen brought a list of topics to discuss. On mile 20 they were still going through the agenda.

For sure there’s something genetic going on here… but in addition to that, Glen spoke about how his mother played a key role in nurturing his drive and entrepreneurial tendencies. To wit: at age 10, Glen had an idea involving solar panels. His mom was so encouraging and supportive that she let him cut a hole in their roof to pursue it. Perhaps not surprising then that he went on to help found SoCore Energy, a successful solar company that produces panels which don’t require any drilling in order to put them on a roof!

Glen Tullman and Rishi Shah at MATTER

We also learned from Glen why he decided to build another startup, Livongo, after 
leaving Allscripts and focusing for a while on investing activities. One of his sons has diabetes, and once woke up with critically low blood sugar. Within minutes a Livongo specialist monitoring his blood sugar called the younger Tullman, coached him on what to do, and waited on the line ready to dial 911 in case anything went sideways. Tullman survived, and told his father that “it felt so good not to be alone” during the ordeal. Livongo has received venture backing from Kleiner Perkins among other firms, and will develop this platform to help people living with a number of chronic conditions including diabetes.

Glen also spoke about how he thinks about building businesses.

  • On hiring: look for cultural fit, passion, and people who have failed before and know how to recover.
  • On firing: do it quickly not just for the sake of the business, but for the sake of the individual who isn’t growing in a position that’s the wrong fit.
  • On sales: The CEO him/herself must be the company’s top salesperson and evangelist. Salespeople must be consultative and learn what customers want. The best salespeople do the “lonely work” before the call — learning about the organization and point of contact and sending materials in advance.
  • On investing: invest in people, rather than ideas.

Thanks to Glen and Rishi for this terrific conversation, and thanks to ContextMedia and Pritzker Group Venture Capital for underwriting MATTER’s Tales from the Trenches series. Next up: entrepreneur Chris Hill on October 26.

Senator Kirk Explores Healthcare Innovation at MATTER

CHICAGO, Aug. 28, 2015 – U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) today toured healthcare technology incubator MATTER to discuss the future of healthcare with entrepreneurs and industry leaders.

Located in Chicago’s Merchandise Mart, MATTER is a community of health technology startups and industry leaders working together to fuel innovation in health IT, medical devices, diagnostics and biopharmaceuticals.


Friday’s discussion focused on how MATTER is working to support the success of next-generation health technology startups and unite healthcare industry leaders in order to improve the quality of healthcare and drive economic growth. Senator Kirk met with Steven Collens, CEO of MATTER; Jeff Aronin, co-chair of MATTER and CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals, and representatives from AbbVie, Astellas Pharma, and BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois, who are among MATTER’s industry partners.

Senator Kirk also sat down with some of the entrepreneurs working at MATTER to develop innovative healthcare solutions, including the founders of MedMatch, a new technology for hiring medical professionals; SuperBetter, an app that has been shown to reduce depression & anxiety; Innoblative, a medical device company, and GTX Surgery, a company that makes surgical simulation available on mobile devices.

Sen. Kirk has worked for several years to further healthcare initiatives in the Senate. As a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Senator Kirk has been instrumental in drafting the Healthier Innovations for America Bill. This legislation would be a Senate counterpart to the House’s 21st Century Cures Act, passed this year with bipartisan support 344-77, which brings health care innovation into the 21st Century and encourages the development of the next generation of cures and treatments. As a member of the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Kirk worked to increase funding for the National Institute of Health (NIH) to $32 billion in FY16, which is a $2 billion increase from FY15 making it the largest increase in over a decade.

“From the invention of the cell phone to the zipper, Illinois has long been a center of innovation,” Senator Kirk said. “MATTER’s elevation of our entrepreneurs, startups and industry leaders is a reason why Chicago stands among the global players of healthcare innovation.”

“MATTER is honored to host Senator Kirk and discuss how entrepreneurs are working to build the future of healthcare here in Chicago,” said MATTER CEO Steven Collens. “We’re grateful for Senator Kirk’s commitment to supporting business growth and healthcare innovation, and we look forward to working with him as MATTER continues to grow.”

“MATTER is helping to make Chicago a global hub for healthcare innovation, and we are fortunate to have leaders like Senator Kirk who are aligned with the mission of health care innovation,” said Jeff Aronin, co-chair of MATTER and CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals. “By working together with entrepreneurs, we can build the next generation of healthcare technology that will improve patient lives.”


MATTER is a community of healthcare entrepreneurs and industry leaders working together in a shared space to individually and collectively fuel the future of healthcare innovation. MATTER’s mission is to proactively connect and promote collaboration among entrepreneurs, scientists, physicians and industry partners to bring next-generation products and services to market that improve quality of care and save lives. MATTER, a not-for-profit organization, was developed by a team of entrepreneurs and industry leaders with the support of the state of Illinois. MATTER began as a project of ChicagoNEXT, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s council on technology and innovation, which is part of World Business Chicago. For more information, visit matterchicago.com and follow @matterchicago.

Dutch Minister of Health Explores Innovation at Chicago Health Technology Incubator MATTER

CHICAGO, June 4, 2015Dutch Minister of Health, Welfare and Sport Edith Schippers toured Chicago’s new healthcare technology incubator MATTER on Wednesday as part of the Chicago Healthy Ageing Seminar.

Hosted by MATTER, the seminar showcased promising new American and Dutch technologies and concepts. Discussions during the seminar focused on sharing best-practices and lessons learned in translational research and patient empowerment.


Schippers’ visit to MATTER was part of a tour of the Midwest by the Dutch royal family and other key officials from the Netherlands. King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima toured Chicago businesses and met with local leaders from healthcare and other industries.

During her visit to MATTER, Minister Schippers learned about innovations that aim to improve healthcare outcomes and create the best possible environment for a healthy society. She also connected with MATTER partner companies including AbbVie and Horizon Pharma.

MATTER is Chicago’s healthcare technology incubator for next-generation health IT, medical device, diagnostics and biopharma companies.

“MATTER’s impact isn’t limited to healthcare innovation in Chicago – we’re helping to launch health technologies that can have a global impact,” said Steven Collens, CEO of MATTER. “We’re honored to meet with the Minister Schipppers, as well as other dignitaries from the Netherlands, to discuss how we can work together to accelerate technology innovation that will improve health and healthcare globally.”


MATTER is a community of healthcare entrepreneurs and industry leaders working together in a shared space to individually and collectively fuel the future of healthcare innovation. MATTER’s mission is to proactively connect and promote collaboration among entrepreneurs, scientists, physicians and industry partners to bring next-generation products and services to market that improve quality of care and save lives. MATTER, a not-for-profit organization, was developed by a team of entrepreneurs and industry leaders with the support of the state of Illinois. MATTER began as a project of ChicagoNEXT, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s council on technology and innovation, which is part of World Business Chicago. For more information, visit matterchicago.com and follow @matterchicago.




Canada’s Governor General Explores Innovation and Entrepreneurship at MATTER and 1871

CHICAGO, April 28, 2015 – David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, toured Chicago’s new healthcare technology incubator MATTER on Tuesday and participated in a roundtable discussion at 1871 about the local innovation ecosystem.

The visit to MATTER and 1871 was part of the Governor General’s five-day visit to the Midwest to learn about the area’s innovation and education initiatives.

SpotMyPhotos David Johnston-3

The discussion Tuesday, led by MATTER CEO Steven Collens and 1871 CEO Howard Tullman, focused on efforts to support entrepreneurship and innovation in the Midwest and the potential impact this effort could have in Canada.

MATTER is Chicago’s healthcare technology incubator for next-generation health IT, medical device, diagnostics and biopharma companies. 1871 is Chicago’s entrepreneurial hub for digital startups.

“It is an honor to welcome Governor General Johnston as the first head of state to visit MATTER,” said Steven Collens, CEO of MATTER. “We hope this visit is a model for continued collaborations across the global economy.”


“International connections are a critical resource for new businesses, and we are committed to fostering globally-focused opportunities for our members,” said 1871 CEO Howard A. Tullman. “We are excited to welcome Ambassador Heyman and the Governor General to 1871 today, and look forward to continuing our collaboration with the Canadian technology and entrepreneurial communities.”

MATTER, a not-for-profit organization, was developed by a team of entrepreneurs and industry leaders with support from the state of Illinois. MATTER began as a project of ChicagoNEXT, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s council on technology and innovation, part of World Business Chicago.


MATTER is a community of healthcare entrepreneurs and industry leaders working together in a shared space to individually and collectively fuel the future of healthcare innovation. MATTER’s mission is to proactively connect and promote collaboration among entrepreneurs, scientists, physicians and industry partners to bring next-generation products and services to market that improve quality of care and save lives. For more information, visit http://www.matterchicago.com and follow @matterchicago.

Congressman Danny Davis Explores Healthcare Innovation with Leaders from MATTER and Marathon Pharmaceuticals

CHICAGO, April 27, 2015Congressman Danny K. Davis (D-IL) toured Chicago’s new healthcare technology incubator MATTER on Monday and led a roundtable discussion with leaders from MATTER, Marathon Pharmaceuticals and other Chicago-area leaders in healthcare technology.



Congressman Davis’ District includes both MATTER and Marathon, and he has long been a champion of healthcare innovation. Davis has co-sponsored legislation to improve innovation in the medical devices sector by repealing the medical device tax, create a more effective FDA by exempting FDA user fees from sequestration, improve research and surveillance efforts for sickle cell disease, strengthen STEM opportunities and create better and more consistent NIH funding.

The discussion Monday focused on the potential for healthcare innovation to improve patients’ lives while creating jobs and economic growth in Chicago. Participants included Steven Collens, CEO of MATTER; Jeff Aronin, co-chair of MATTER and CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals; and MATTER partners and member companies including Helix Health and Wellness, doc&i and Regroup Therapy.

MATTER is Chicago’s healthcare technology incubator for next-generation health IT, medical device, diagnostics and biopharma companies.

“Chicago has long been a home for research and innovation in healthcare.  MATTER is an exciting and important new addition to our scientific base.  The work being done here reflects the high level of technical expertise and entrepreneurial initiative housed here and offers great promise for the coming years,” said Congressman Davis.

“Congressman Davis has been a champion for driving jobs and innovation and improving access to healthcare,” said Collens, CEO of MATTER. “We’re honored to have the Congressman visit MATTER and learn more about the next generation of healthcare technology being developed here in his district.”



Congressman Davis has also co-sponsored legislation to incentivize development of orphan drugs and advanced antibiotics. Marathon Pharmaceuticals develops new treatments for rare disease and is an industry leader in research and development for rare neurological and genetic disorders.

“Marathon Pharmaceuticals is proud to be represented in Congress by someone who shares our commitment to improving patients’ lives through innovations in healthcare,” said Jeff Aronin, CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals and co-chair of MATTER. “We value the opportunity to collaborate with our elected officials as we work to develop new treatments for rare diseases.”



MATTER is a community of healthcare entrepreneurs and industry leaders working together in a shared space to individually and collectively fuel the future of healthcare innovation. MATTER’s mission is to proactively connect and promote collaboration among entrepreneurs, scientists, physicians and industry partners to bring next-generation products and services to market that improve quality of care and save lives. For more information, visit www.matterchicago.com and follow @matterchicago.

About Marathon Pharmaceuticals

Marathon Pharmaceuticals, LLC is a biopharmaceutical company that develops new treatments for rare diseases with a focus on providing medicine to patients who currently have no treatment options. The company is developing a pipeline of treatments for rare neurological and movement disorders. Marathon is headquartered in Northbrook, Illinois, with offices in Chicago, New Jersey and Washington D.C. For more information, visit www.marathonpharma.com.

Photos From the Event








MATTER Members Exhibiting at HIMSS & HX360

Here’s a list of the MATTER member companies who will be exhibiting at HIMSS15 and HX360. Stop by and learn more about these new healthcare IT innovations.

Apervita is a secure, self-service platform that enables health professionals and enterprises to author, publish and subscribe to a market of evidence-based algorithms and measures, easily connecting them to data and workflow. Available to every health professional and powerful enough for the entire health enterprise, Apervita provides health analytics at a tenth of today’s cost, in a hundredth of the time. (Booth #3688)

CareSkore is an enterprise software company reinventing case management and care coordination with an aim to improve outcomes for patients and providers. Applying risk modeling and predictive analysis to existing data, CareSkore helps better measure and manage risk for patients and for providers. The highly intuitive solution has powerful functionality, robust reporting and workflow automation. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

Caretree is a centralized, coordinated health record that is as easy as Facebook to use. Patients, caregivers, families or providers simply create a patient profile and invite others to access it. CareTree uses role-based security to enforce HIPAA compliance and control access to protected information. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

Coeus Health is pioneering the translation of evidence-based health behavior interventions by serving as the “Intel inside” for digital health. While digital health holds promise for addressing the growing obesity epidemic, evidence-based solutions are nearly absent from the market. Coeus Health is bringing clinically proven content to the digital weight management market. (Harris Solutions Booth #4168)

 doc&i is a prescription pricing software for healthcare providers that ensures patients receive the best value for their prescriptions prior to arriving at the pharmacy. doc&i integrates pricing data from multiple sources using a proprietary database and algorithm to deliver point-of-care, real-time prescription pricing and coverage transparency to healthcare providers within their existing workflow. (Harris Solutions Booth #4168)

Double Helix Group develops telehealth solutions for the prevention and self-management of chronic disease. With their partners, Helix Medical Group, the company provides affordable care online. Together, they support engagement between regular visits with primary care physician satisfaction. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

Neurocern is a virtual brain health platform that helps health systems better manage care for brain health patients. Neurocern’s SaaS solution taps into the combined power of neuroscience, predictive analytics, and telehealth to improve patient experience, care coordination, and grow strategic service lines. (Harris Solutions Booth #4168)

Prana Diabetes is tackling the growth of diabetes through a service that brings together technology and social ties to promote good lifestyle habits. The Prana platform enables simple, phone-based monitoring and record keeping of key health parameters while creating a personal support network for diabetes management. Prana Diabetes is an Impact Engine portfolio company. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

Stealth Mark is a global product authentication solution provider specializing in brand protection. Offering one the most advanced product security solutions, Stealth Mark protects companies and governmental agencies from unauthorized reproduction (counterfeiting), diversion or theft of their most valued assets. For years, Stealth Mark has delivered security solutions that emphasize four key principles: security strength, ease of implementation, authentication speed/simplicity, and total cost of ownership. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

Purple Binder connects patients with services that address the social determinants of health, such as counseling, housing and food pantries. After the connection is made, Purple Binder closes the loop and verifies that the patient received the services. The company’s solution is used by payors and health systems to manage care for vulnerable populations. Purple Binder is a Healthbox portfolio company. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

Quant HC is dedicated to simplifying medicine. Quant HC harnesses the power of existing data and in many cases the existing IT infrastructure to produce algorithms designed to deliver the right data at the right time. Quant HC’s flagship product, eCART, can detect all cause patient deterioration hours in advance, facilitating staff clinical evaluation that can lead to improved patient outcomes, patient experience scores and hospital economics. (Booth #3688)

SafeStart is a surgical safety process built around an iOS app. SafeStart improves patient safety, patient satisfaction, staff workflow and patient throughput, and decreases overall facility and provider risk. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)

vCareConnect is a care coordination SAAS platform that identifies patients’ care needs, reminds patients, caregivers, providers and care managers (the care team) of their tasks, and enables collaboration among care team members. The platform’s fully integrated and multi-channel (voice/SMS/text) approach increases engagement with patients of all age groups. vCareConnect’s role-based, HIPAA-compliant security model also makes it easy for patients to share their care profiles with caregivers, providers or care managers. (Booth #8191 Startup Showcase)