Two members of the Engineering Medicine (EnMed) faculty recently collaborated with a medical technology startup, Caira Surgical, to gain a $256,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) Phase I Small Business Technology Transfer grant.
Dr. Andrew Robbins, research assistant professor for EnMed, and Dr. Michael Moreno, associate professor in the J. Mike Walker ’66 Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M University and director of innovation for EnMed, partnered with New York-based startup Caira Surgical on a project aimed at developing a novel radar-guided, computer-assisted surgical system for total joint replacement surgery.
“Caira is developing new technologies that simplify workflows and enable better patient outcomes in joint replacements,” said Robbins, who is the principal investigator for the Texas A&M component of the project. “We are excited to work with them on the development of a navigation system for knee replacements that will shorten procedure time, reduce invasive surgical instruments, and significantly reduce the cost and complexity of utilizing advanced technology in joint replacement surgery.”
According to Robbins, the grant from the NSF validates the need to effectively leverage science and engineering to address unmet needs in health care, the ultimate goal of EnMed.
“Support like this will help us translate basic science into meaningful solutions that address tremendous health care needs,” he said.
Having received the initial $256,000 Phase I grant, the researchers will be eligible to apply for a Phase II grant of up to $1 million to continue their research upon successful completion of the Phase I project.