Improving gut health for consumers through innovative products like fibrewater.


After transforming their own health with prebiotics, three friends, who personally experienced gut related health challenges founded The Prebiotic Company Ltd and launched fibrewater, the UK’s first prebiotic, fibre-infused water in May 2022. Their vision is to lead in the creation of gut health drinks and food products, leveraging the symbiotic relationship between prebiotics and probiotics to enhance gut and overall health.

Prebiotics, specific dietary fibres, play a vital role in nurturing probiotic bacteria, which collectively support gut health and overall well-being. With over 4,000 research papers demonstrating the benefits of prebiotics in supporting the immune system and reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and colorectal cancer, as well as improving mood and sleep, fibrewater delivers 100% of the daily intake of prebiotics and 20% of an adult’s daily fibre intake.

The Challenge

The company’s collaboration with Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) aimed to validate the efficacy of their core product, fibrewater, and lay the groundwork for future product development. They sought to understand how fibrewater impacted different probiotics. As prebiotics feed beneficial microbes (probiotics), the company needed to know exactly how, and what probiotics responded to the core fibrewater recipe which would be crucial for expanding their product range.

The Solution

In meeting with several different academic partners identified by Interface, Dr. John Butcher and Dr. Ryan Kean from GCU proved to be ideal academic partners, possessing the necessary expertise and enthusiasm for the project. This collaboration not only provided funding for research but also enriched the academic portfolios of the researchers involved, providing an interdisciplinary project in the fields of microbiology and prebiotic food science. Additionally, it provided valuable experience for an undergraduate BSc Food Science student to generate preliminary work as part of their final year research project. Working with a newly launched, novel, prebiotic drink was an excellent opportunity for the student, providing a meaningful project as part of a larger piece of work.

The funding received for this collaboration allowed the purchase of key strains of probiotic bacteria, which now form part of the GCU bacterial culture collection to be used in future teaching and research projects at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. The project also led to the development of lab methods that will translate to future projects. In addition, these strains have been utilised in public outreach activities including school visits and open evenings for the promotion of Food Science.

The collaboration yielded significant findings, which were released in November 2022 on GCUs social media platforms, promoting Food Science, academia and industry collaboration. The findings also bolstered investor interest for The Prebiotic Company and paved the way for further collaborations with academic and healthcare institutions.
GCU’s research findings are currently guiding the development of new product variants to add to the fibrewater product range.

The Benefits

Company Benefits

Academic Benefits

Next Steps

The personal health journeys of the company’s founders Mohsin Laginaf, Alyssa Reid and Jay Curthan continue to drive their commitment to improving gut health for consumers through innovative products like fibrewater.

The Bettii Pod Ltd – Revolutionising Menstrual Care 


The Bettii Pod Ltd, founded in 2021 by CEO Elaine Galston, is a start-up dedicated to normalising and destigmatising periods while promoting sustainable menstrual practices and enabling access to the testing of menstrual blood for key female focused health concerns. Focused on creating an away-from-home infrastructure for the management of reusable sanitary wear, the company aims to address challenges faced by users of reusable menstrual products, specifically the lack of facilities for cleaning and sanitising menstrual cups and discs in away-from-home environments.

1.8 billion people have periods, leading to 100 billion soiled single use period products being disposed of every year. These products are over 90% plastic and take over 500 years to decompose.  The planet cannot support this. Reusables is the largest growth sector in the menstrual market with an estimated 64 million menstrual cups sold per annum with a 56% growth prediction. 

The Challenge

The primary challenge being addressed by The Bettii Pod Ltd relates to the absence of convenient facilities for cleaning reusable menstrual cups in public spaces, an issue deemed such an obstacle that it was raised by the UN in a 2021 report which implored governments across the world to consider how to enable access to water within female toilets for menstrual cup cleaning. This obstacle, together with the lack of awareness and understanding of menstrual reusables, hinders the widespread adoption of sustainable menstrual products, affecting issues such as period poverty, environmental sustainability and at-home health testing adoption.

Currently menstrual cup users either do not clean their cup or use bottled water and/or disposable wipes which is not good for health, for the environment or practical. Over 23% drop their cup down the toilet or on the floor. The intended purpose of the Bettii product is to support sustainable menstrual practices, enabling eco-friendly menstrual product adoption and mitigating health concerns related to inadequate washing facilities. This gives potential users confidence to adopt cost saving reusables thereby helping eradicate period poverty and enabling access to the market for at-home testing of menstrual blood for key health concerns. 

The company’s innovative solution was to develop an installable menstrual cup washer and sanitiser within toilet cubicles of various public locations, such as offices, gyms, cinemas, stadiums, airports, tourist attractions and other public infrastructures.

The Solution

Interface introduced The Bettii Pod Ltd, together with their designers Fearsome Ltd, to West College Scotland and with the help of Innovation Voucher Funding, the project to develop the world’s first menstrual cup washer and sanitiser for away-from-home environments was born. The collaboration involved extensive research, design, review of key, potentially limiting regulations, and the creation of a lab-based prototype.

The project looked at designing an installable sanitary washer, identifying related infrastructure requirements, and developing installation training. The outcome of the initial phase is the process design of a sanitary menstrual cup washer with the potential for global installation. 

The partnership utilised the technical expertise of the College and active engagement from Bettii Pod’s product development team to design a prototype and toolkit, laying the foundation for commercial viability. The academic team’s support filled crucial gaps in electrical and plumbing expertise, providing insights into design alterations’ impact on sustainability and compliance with standards. This collaborative effort ensures the product’s alignment with industry standards and efficient installation requirements. 

The support from the technical academic staff became invaluable providing crucial insights into the entire design process, from the conceptual stage to compliance and manufacturing. Their expertise was particularly beneficial in assessing how design alterations could positively impact sustainability, with a specific focus on Ingress Protection (IP) which determines the different degrees of protection of the enclosures of electrical and electronic equipment against external elements, IK rating which is defined in international standards and indicates a product’s resistance to mechanical impact, and Water Regulations Approval Scheme (WRAS) compliance.  

This unique contribution filled a critical gap in Bettii Pod’s capabilities, ensuring that the product design would meet the necessary standards and considerations for long-term success. The academic team’s input was instrumental in addressing challenges that could not be sourced elsewhere or managed internally, highlighting the pivotal role they played in the development of the project. 

The lab prototype was developed, eradicating key operational and installation barriers giving the Company much needed assurance as to the commercial applicability of their innovation.

This product boasts a pioneering design that sets it apart as the first of its kind, addressing a critical gap in the market with no comparable alternatives currently available. Full market analysis and proof of concept have now been completed. The lab-based prototype is finalised with patents to be registered in early 2025. 

The collaboration between The Bettii Pod Ltd and West College Scotland represents a ground-breaking effort to revolutionize menstrual care, promote sustainability, and address societal period, reusables and health challenges. By combining industry expertise with academic insights, the partnership has created a pioneering product with significant potential for societal and environmental impact. Ongoing collaboration will ensure a successful development and integration of the product into the market, emphasizing a commitment to innovation, standards compliance, and mutual success.

The Bettii Pod Ltd and West College Scotland continue to work together to develop and introduce the product to the marketplace.

The Benefits

In January 2024, CPI is convening pharma partners, industry, funding
agencies, regulators and, most importantly, innovators for three days of discussion
around technological challenges faced by the industry.

The event will occur over 3 days, with each day covering a different area:

16th January 2024: Sustainability
17th January 2024: New Modalities
18th January 2024: Digital

Innovators, including established SMEs, recent university spin-outs, and academics are invited to showcase their technology at the event in a short pitch
session — an opportunity to give a brief overview of the technology and highlight
its potential applications and impact on pharmaceutical manufacturing.
As an innovator, you will receive valuable feedback on your technology from the
industry and funding body experts, and understand the opportunities for your
technology, the risks to adoption, and existing gaps.

For more information on this event, please follow the button below.


Therme Group is an industry leader in the wellbeing sector with multiple major water-based wellbeing facilities throughout Europe with new facilities in the UK and Canada under construction.

Therme’s guiding philosophy is “Wellbeing for all” which delivers a holistic approach to wellbeing and includes a social outreach dimension to make the facilities available to all of the community in the city regions where they have sites. This holistic approach encompasses the aesthetics and design of the built environment, the impact of the water based, and other wellbeing treatments offered and extends to nutrition and the sources of food offered on site.

Therme UK has plans to open a major new £125M facility on the Clyde serving as the regional centre in Scotland to deliver Therme UK’s 90:90 UK access strategy. This seeks to position Therme facilities such that 90% of the UK population are within 90 minutes’ drive of a Therme facility.

The Challenge

Therme Group have five main guiding principles and areas of focus around which they build their business model and facilities. These are Health, Equity, Security, Learning and Environment. In each case they are interested in strategic research partners that can help Therme as a group deliver improved operational delivery, minimise environmental impact and ultimately improve customer experience.

They have developed subject specific strategic research & development (R&D) relationships with the University of Florence for the built environment and in Scotland they have supported research activity in the University of Glasgow and James Hutton Institute (Dundee) developing frameworks of wellbeing and food technology respectively.

The collaboration facilitated by Interface came about from the combination of a planned major facility in Glasgow and the recognition of the strength in the University of Glasgow in four key areas of research, Wellbeing Research, Informing Policy, Wellbeing Technology and Environmental Technology directly relevant to Therme’s long term needs. This led to a feasibility study, supported by Interface, which provided an evidence base for exploring the creation of a global Centre of Wellbeing Research Excellence (WellEX) in Glasgow.

The Solution

Interface made initial introduction and discussions between Therme Group and the University of Glasgow who successfully applied to the Inward investment Catalyst Fund to support a WellEX feasibility.

The basis of the feasibility study was to raise awareness of the opportunity and develop connections between senior management at the Therme Group responsible for Innovation and the relevant Business, Social Science, Health and Technology academics and departments within the University. In particular, the feasibility exercise and subsequent discussions identified four areas of future collaboration where Therme’s interests and the University of Glasgow’s expertise aligned.

These included:

Wellbeing innovations: Therme Group is primarily interested in understanding how wellbeing improvement can be brought about for individuals and populations, and the broader benefits of wellbeing on society, the economy, and the environment through evidence-based research.

Informing policy: Through close collaboration with the local government and communities, the research conducted by WellEX is expected to support the work of the University of Glasgow to explore, validate, and inform wellbeing strategies and policies at the local and national levels, working to understand the complexity of policy intervention.

Wellbeing technology: To explore, develop and test “wellbeing technology” focused on improving the effects of wellbeing innovations and users’ experience within and outside Therme Group sites.

Sustainability practices: To explore and validate sustainability practices for Therme wellbeing activities and facilities to leverage renewable energy sources and reduce carbon emissions.

The feasibility study validated the concept of a Global Centre of Excellence, providing an evidence base for a Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) funding application in 2022 and ongoing funding applications.

The findings showed that the University of Glasgow was well placed to both anchor and act as an international R&D hub for Therme’s aspirations to develop a world-class centre of excellence in wellbeing. The planned development of a major new facility in Glasgow, serving the Scottish population catchment area, offers a unique opportunity to create such a WellEX and capture the significant research, societal and economic benefits this would bring to Scotland.

The University of Glasgow are commited to developing this proposition further and presenting a full business case for consideration by Therme Group, the University, and strategic partners such as Glasgow City Council and Scottish Government agencies, including Scottish Funding Council (SFC), Scottish Development International (SDI), and Scottish Enterprise (SE).

The Benefits

This project benefitted from the Scottish Inward Investment Catalyst Fund. The Scottish Inward Investment Catalyst Fund launched by Interface and the Scottish Government promotes Scotland as a leading destination for inward investment and supports businesses not yet located in Scotland but seeking to establish stronger ties with academia here. As well as funding research and development it provides an opportunity for the company to establish relationships and give insight into other aspects of the Scottish landscape, such as further investment opportunities, supply chains and the skills base to strengthen the case for investing in Scotland.

The DHI Rural Centre of Excellence project in Moray is supporting the delivery of additional educational opportunities, courses, and skills provision – both for people interested in a career in digital health and care and for current and future frontline health and care staff in need of understanding digital ways of working. We also want to raise awareness about the types of jobs, career opportunities, and skills requirements associated with digital health and care.

Digital technology is transforming the health and care sector. This will affect the way health and social care is delivered in Moray and will have an impact on the skills and capabilities required by the workforce.

The event is free to attend, and you can expect to:


Simon Bokor-Ingram, Chief Officer, Health and Social Care Moray
Janette Hughes, Director of Planning and Performance, Digital Health & Care Innovation Centre (DHI)
Sanna Rimpiläinen, Head of Research and Skills, Digital Health & Care Innovation Centre (DHI)
Rosemary McCormack, Head of Curriculum, UHI Moray
Dylan White, Principal Lead, NHS Youth Academy
Ruth Cochrane, Lead Academic, Glasgow School of Art Innovation School
Andrew Ord, Account Executive, Microsoft

There will also be representatives from NHS Grampian, Scottish Care, the Cognitive Assistive Robotic Environments (CARE) Group at Heriot-Watt University, Scottish AI Alliance, Skills Development Scotland, Education Scotland, and the Scottish Ambulance Service.


Bubble FLO® has created a fun, child friendly, visually engaging, and effective physiotherapy medical device the Bubble FLO® PEP (Positive Expiratory Pressure) Device for the treatment of chronic lung conditions.


Bubble FLO® was set up by Katie Vance to develop a child friendly, engaging and effective physiotherapy medical device- a Bubble Positive Expiratory Pressure (PEP) Device for the treatment of chronic lung conditions.  

Positive-expiratory-pressure (PEP) therapy is a respiratory therapy that applies resistance to expiration, to produce positive airway pressure.  Since the 1930s, PEP has been used to improve oxygenation, increase lung volume and reduce venous return in patients with congestive heart failure.  PEP improves collateral ventilation, secretion clearance, aerosol distribution and functional residual capacity. (Respiratory Care:April 2009, Vol 54, No.4) 


The idea of creating a Bubble PEP device evolved when Katie’s daughter was diagnosed with a lifelong respiratory condition and the equipment supplied to carry out vital twice daily physiotherapy was very basic and lacked visual engagement for children.  Katie discovered there was no specific Paediatric equipment available, so she decided to develop a Bubble PEP Device which was fun, engaging and effective in clearing secretions from the lungs, and that was aesthetically pleasing, easily portable and easy to empty and re-fill.  

The technology did not exist to meet these key practical needs and Katie recognised that such a product could be revolutionary in this critical field.  The prototype that she developed was given very positive feedback from physiotherapists who worked with Katie’s daughter, and they expressed a need for a similar device for use by other patients and so Bubble FLO® was born.    


To develop the concept Katie contacted Interface, who, after putting out a search to Scotland’s universities and research institutes, partnered her with Kath Sharp, NHS Team Lead in Paediatric physiotherapy at Glasgow Caledonian University, (who introduced the technique to the West of Scotland and acted as a consultant on the project), and Professor Terence Gourlay, from the University of Strathclyde’s Biomedical Engineering Department, who has extensive experience in the design, development and commercialisation of medical devices.   

This collaborative project, funded by a Scottish Funding Council Innovation Voucher, focused on the development of a novel respiratory improvement technology aimed at the paediatric sector, but based on known and well-established approaches. The novelty in the proposed approach is centred around making what can be a tiresome therapy for children, fun and engaging.  

The experience the Department of Biomedical Engineering has in the production of laboratory, test-ready prototype devices was applied to the project to produce near clinically deliverable prototypes of the proposed technology which were then successfully tested under laboratory conditions. 

Subsequently Bubble FLO® was awarded a By Design Grant from Scottish Enterprise, which allowed the prototype design and ergonomics to be developed further. 

Through the support of South of Scotland Enterprise, Bubble FLO® worked with an engineer to develop manufacturing tools, create 40 prototypes and completed bio burden and chemical compatibility testing. 

Regulatory work has been completed with the support of CPI and Innovate UK to ensure the product is suitable for use. 

BubbleFLO are hoping to start clinical trials with the West of Scotland Innovation Hub at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow soon. 

Interface have continued to assist Bubble FLO® brokering collaborations with the University of Strathclyde to create a brand and marketing strategy to target families of children with respiratory conditions and with Edinburgh Napier University to develop a “How to Set Up and Use” animated video with the aim of using animated characters to turn what can be a very daunting experience for a child into a fun and engaging one. 


As the Bubble FLO® PEP Device will be more engaging for children than the current NHS equipment; children will be much more motivated to carry out effective physiotherapy sessions and, in turn, this has the potential to save the NHS budget considerably through a reduction in hospital admissions for respiratory treatment. 

Whilst initially, sales of the Bubble FLO® PEP Device will be to parents online, it is hoped the NHS will purchase this new medical equipment as a long-term investment to reduce their overall budget after completion of an upcoming clinical trial with the West of Scotland Innovation Hub, Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.

The development of the proposed technology will underpin the foundation of the commercial activity around this novel product. The company have benefitted from the University’s expertise in the development of prototypes, their laboratory evaluation and expertise in tooling design and production of the medical devices. 

Subsequent collaborations have provided Bubble FLO® with a marketing and targeting strategy and produced a novel animated guide for children and parents to be able to use the device at home. 

The academic partner has benefitted through this new research activity in the paediatric respiratory sector and in the use of this project as a case study for teaching purposes. In addition, the project fits very well with the Department’s objective of being supportive of the Scottish life science and med tech sectors. 

This project was nominated for Innovator of the Year at the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards and won a Wild Card at the Scottish EDGE. 

This is a collaborative event for everyone interested in engaging in health and life sciences innovation in the Highlands and Islands. Hosted by Highlands and Islands Enterprise, NHS Highland and the University of the Highlands and Islands at the new Life Sciences Innovation Centre on the Inverness Campus.

This event will highlight mechanisms and routes for growing health innovation opportunities throughout the Highlands and Islands. This includes regional expertise, infrastructure, funding and services available within HIE, NHS Highland, and UHI, as well as through relevant regional and national partner organisations.

This event is open to all involved parties in health science (including in MedTech and Digital Health) such as entrepreneurs and third sector organisation interested in health product and service development, evaluation and assessment, as well as implementation for clinical and/or commercial benefit. NHS staff from outside Highland are welcome along with anyone in the health and social care sector.

The SCOUT Project, in partnership with PwC UK LLP, is running an innovation clinic for SME leaders and line managers to gain insights from industry experts on what lies ahead for the sector and how SMEs can best take advantage of upcoming future opportunities. Topics up for discussion will include; Designing your operating model; R&D Tax Credits and incentives; Moving into manufacturing and Getting support.

In addition, attendees will also be granted a guided tour of the new, state-of-the-art Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre, hearing first-hand about the exciting work already underway within this world leading, carbon neutral facility – including how cutting edge technologies are delivering; a reduction of API, solvent and energy usage in manufacturing; leveraging digital twins to maximise operational efficiency; and reducing <50% wastage in automated clinical trial manufacture.

Spaces are limited, and demand is expected to be high, so book your place today by emailing

The SCOUT Project is a fully funded service which aims to accelerate and de-risk the growth of Scottish SMEs in chemical, biochemical and life science sectors, who are seeking or developing disruptive technologies and is jointly funded by the European Regional Development Fund (managed by Scottish Enterprise) CPI, CMAC Future Manufacturing Research Hub (CMAC) and the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC).

The Medical Device Manufacturing Centre (MDMC) is hosting its 2nd Annual Conference which will bring together industry, NHS and academia to discuss the latest services offered by stakeholders in the life sciences and healthcare sector.

This conference is unique in its breadth and offers the opportunity for delegates to find out more about initiatives set by the NHS and government, as well as learn about the latest advances by companies in the sector.

It will provide invaluable networking opportunities and companies will be offered free exhibition space on a first come, first served basis. Academia will have the opportunity to present their research work through a posters exhibition.

If you are interested in the latest MedTech news and tips, or seek further insight into growing your business, come along and be a part of this invaluable opportunity to network with like-minded individuals, companies and stakeholders in the Scottish life sciences and healthcare sector.


The morning session focus is on the services that SMEs can access to accelerate innovation.

The afternoon session will explore the activities and services in health and care offered by organisations such as Scottish Enterprise, the Centre for Process Innovations (CPI), and the Digital Health and Care Innovation Centre (DHI-Scotland).

About MDMC

The mission of the MDMC is to provide expert advice on manufacturing engineering, regulatory issues and funding, coupled with technically supported access to manufacturing facilities, to assist small- and medium-sized companies in the translation of medical device concepts through to small batch commercial prototypes. Services provided by the MDMC are free of charge to SMEs, with priority to Scottish SMEs at all times.

A consortium of 4 universities led by Heriot-Watt and funded from the Advancing Manufacturing Challenge Fund (AMCF) and the Edinburgh City Deal, the MDMC offers medical device development and manufacture in Scotland, providing companies with an enabling step towards first-in-patient-studies.