Sella Therapies

A novel therapy for chronic pain relief that targets the body’s internal neuropeptide system

Sella Therapies is a clinical-stage medical device company developing a novel therapy for chronic pain relief that targets the body’s internal neuropeptide system.

One in five adults in the United States suffer daily from severe chronic pain, and one in ten (24M adults) experience ongoing disruptions in work and/or social life because of untreated pain. Current pain management therapies fail to adequately handle many pain modalities and have the risk of serious negative side effects. Opioids overuse for pain management has led to a global health crisis and a clear mandate for better, safer alternatives.

To address this unmet clinical need, Sella is developing an implanted, minimally-invasive medical device capable of treating whole-body pain without side effects. The device targets the pituitary gland where it delivers small, safe electrical pulses to activate the release of the hormone/neuropeptide oxytocin, inducing a powerful natural analgesic that can mitigate even severe pain. Sella’s approach builds on an historical body of clinical evidence that demonstrates the efficacy of pituitary-stimulation-mediated oxytocin release for treating pain. 

The company was founded by Dr. Wouter van Furth, a pituitary gland neurosurgeon with a background in neuropeptide research and a previous med tech startup, together with Dr. Andrew Wilder and Scott Hiatt, neurostimulation experts and owners of Ripple LLC, a medical device company specializing in implantable bioelectronics. The founding team has experience in the critical areas of clinical practice as well as medical device development and commercialization.

To date, Sella has received over €1M in non-dilutive seed investment, and will begin a funded proof-of-concept clinical trial in Q4 2021 at the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, Netherlands. In conjunction with this POC study, Sella is planning further device development and clinical validation, with an endpoint of pivotal study commencement in 6 years.

Wouter van Furth
Startup activities

Winner Venture Challenge Summer 2021


Wouter van Furth