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NCI-Funded Device Start-Ups Offer Game-Changing Technologies

At the NCI SBIR 2012 Investor Forum, a select group of SBIR grant-funded emerging cancer device companies presented promising next-generation technologies poised to dramatically impact survival from a variety of cancers, including deadly lung, liver, and esophageal malignancies.

Medical Device Innovation

Colorectal Cancer: Meeting the Challenge

Early detection of colorectal cancer can dramatically improve an individual's chances for avoiding this deadly disease, and screening colonoscopy is the gold standard for CRC prevention. One detractor, however, is patient avoidance due to perceived discomfort of the bowel preparation process and the colonoscopy itself. Mitigation of these concerns has prompted companies to look for less invasive or even noninvasive screening solutions that have the same sensitivity as diagnostic colonoscopy. These emerging technologies range from advanced endoscopic devices to new methods of in vivo tissue characterization.

Medical Device

Overcoming Skepticism About Cancer Diagnostics

In cancer diagnostics skepticism and optimism exist side by side. This is evident from a growing dichotomy between the spurt of early research projects, fueled by new technologies and increased government spending, and the lack of investor interest. Despite a brutal financing market and past disappointments, a few start-ups determined to address the field's unmet needs are pursuing development of new markers and detection technologies and gaining momentum.

Medical Device Business Strategies

Optical Detection: From Physicists to Physicians

Several companies formed in the 1990's are poised to validate the clinical potential of light-based diagnostics as they guide through clinical trials products for a wide variety of applications in cancer, dermatology, gastrointestinal and cardiovascular diseases. Developers of the new optical imaging technologies ultimately hope to improve the way physicians diagnose diseases, by enabling insight into conditions where detection is currently inadequate. They hope to improve outcomes by detecting diseases at earlier stages, before pathological changes become visible. Finally, they aim to develop non-invasive systems that offer rapid diagnosis at the point of care, so that physicians can see and treat patients in a single visit. For now, though, companies are approaching the market cautiously. Most have a strategy of getting their products approved for adjunctive applications rather than attempting to win approval for the devices as standalone diagnostic systems that replace current screening methods.

Medical Device Platform Technologies
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