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Engineering’s Michael Fu wins grant to help commercialize device

Michael Fu of CWRU stands in front of computersMichael Fu, research assistant professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, received one of four grants totaling $150,000 in the 2016 Target Challenge grant competition held by New England Pediatric Device Consortium (NEPDC), Center for Translation of Rehabilitation Engineering Advances and Technology, Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America and the Foundation for Physical Therapy.

Fu won the grant to help commercialize his electrical-stimulation-assisted video game hand therapy—a treatment for children with hand disabilities due to cerebral palsy, he explained.

“The purpose of this commercialization project is to utilize NEPDC’s pediatric medical device commercialization expertise and resources to develop deployment strategies,” Fu said.

The four winners were selected for their ability to address the unmet need for medical devices used in pediatric rehabilitation.

The institutions awarded $150,000 in grant funding and more than 400 hours of in-kind service to the commercialization of four medical devices. All applications were reviewed through a multi-stage process by a panel of business, clinical, and technology development experts, and selected finalists were invited to pitch their strategy for developing and bringing their device to market.

Other awardees were:

  • UNYQ Scoliosis Brace – UNYQ, San Francisco
  • Lite Run Pediatric Gait Trainer – Lite Run Inc., Minneapolis
  • PlayGait – University of Washington, Seattle

Each device awarded in the 2016 Target Challenge is expected to be on the market within 18 months or near market with additional financial investments and development.