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MDCI 07-19-11


Industry News and Innovations, Medical Device Clinical Trials, Medical Device Market by Benjamin Hunting & Mark Sheehan, MDCI Blogging Team, Tuesday, July 19th, 2011  

Medical device startup companies in the state of Massachusetts have access to an important resource in the form of the Medical Device Development Center (M2D2). Managed by UMass Lowell and UMass Worcester, this business incubator is specifically geared towards providing those making their first forays into the medical device field with the support that they need to bring their product to market.

Funded by the John Adams Innovation Institute, M2D2 offers companies, researchers, and inventors a broad range of services that are critical to the development of new medical devices. The main goal of M2D2 is to provide an environment where startup companies can attract the venture capital or complete the research or regulatory steps that they need to move their medical device project further down the path towards approval and sale. This is accomplished by giving medical device manufacturers access to engineering resources and state-of-the-art equipment (including advanced laboratory environments and prototyping facilities), as well as space for conducting animal and clinical trials. M2D2 is also able to offer advice regarding FDA regulations and assistance with putting companies in contact with the researchers and other professionals that are key to making medical device products a reality.

One of the most compelling aspects of the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center is that it is open to working with medical device companies no matter how large or how small. Especially valuable for startups is the access to veteran medical device entrepreneurs who assist M2D2 in the form of a mentorship program, allowing participants to tap into the immense knowledge base of those who have successfully transitioned from the program into the medical device industry. M2D2 can also assist medical device companies with Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer grant writing, with 60% of grants written through the organization receiving funding.

MDCI’s Mark Sheehan recently had the chance to experience the M2D2 incubator firsthand and witness demonstrations of several of the medical device products that are currently under development through the program. The companies participating in the incubator program represented a wide variety of different areas of care, including TheraTor’s mattress product designed to treat pressure ulcers, CMB Science’s electrospun silk material systems designed to aid in wound healing, MedicaMetrix’s ProstaGlove prostate cancer screening device, and Vista Scientific’s topical ophthalmic drug delivery systems. Sheehan noted that each of the teams that presented their medical devices via the M2D2 event he attended were able to leverage the incubator’s resources in order to bring new technology to bear on the particular problem that they chose to focus on.

MDCI encourages new medical device companies located in New England to explore the potential support offered by M2D2 incubator program as a tool for advancing the development of products on the cutting edge of technology.