In true garage innovation fashion, Billy Cohn, M.D., took a Sawzall to a painter’s tape “ribbon” to officially open the Center for Device Innovation @ Texas Medical Center (CDI @ TMC).
A collaboration between the Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, Johnson & Johnson Innovation and the Texas Medical Center, the CDI brings together expertise and resources for taking new medical technologies from concept to commercialization while providing J&J’s medical devices research and development teams a state-of-the-art “maker space” to rapidly prototype and access preclinical facilities across the Texas Medical Center.
“Great things are going to come out of this,” said William McKeon, president and CEO of the Texas Medical Center during his welcoming remarks. “We are glad Johnson & Johnson put its faith in Houston and the Texas Medical Center.”
Bruce Rosengard, M.D., chief medical, science and technology officer of Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, said the CDI @ TMC was “the next step in the company’s 130-year journey to bring new ideas to fruition to help patients around the world.”
In addition to getting a look around the Center for Device Innovation, J&J hosted two panels with some star power in the medical device arena.
The first, moderated by Rowan Chapman, head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation California, discussed “challenges facing entrepreneurs in today’s medical devices landscape,” and included: Dan Sullivan, former CEO of NeuWave Medical; Marv Slepian, professor of medicine (cardiology) and biomedical engineering at the University of Arizona, and founder of CSO SynCardia; Manish Kothari, president of SRI Ventures; Manny Villafana, founder of St. Jude Medical; and Maurice Ferre, founder of Mako Surgical and chairman and CEO of Insightec.
The second panel, moderated by David Cassak of MedTech Strategist, featured Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies leaders discussing the “future of medical devices innovation,” which included Rosengard, as well as Peter Shen and Euan Thomson, both global heads of research and development.
Cohn, vice president of Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies and director of the Center for Device Innovation, also announced three companies who were recently awarded winners of the CDI @ TMC QuickFire Challenge, a device-focused challenge aimed at game-changing early-stage medical device innovations across strategic areas of interest for Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices, with an emphasis on surgical oncology and/or obesity.
LifeSprout, Smartfuse and Barostitch will share $50,000, receive one year of paid lab space at JLABS @ TMC, gain access to the device prototyping lab, and receive mentorship, coaching and the opportunity for additional funding from angelMD.
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