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Virginia Medical Device Company Wins Small Business Grants

Blood bag (NIH)

(National Institutes of Health)

HemoSonics LLC, a developer of blood diagnostics devices in Charlottesville, Virginia, has received three grants totaling some $2 million from National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Office of Naval Research. The company was founded by three faculty members at University of Virginia, also in Charlottesville, to commercialize their research in biomedical engineering.

HemoSonics’ technology, called sonorheometry, is an ultrasound-based tool developed by the researchers to determine specific properties of a patient’s blood. In measuring the time it takes blood to clot, the firmness of a clot, and the rates at which a clot forms and dissolves, this technology enables physicians to identify specific clotting defects and treat them effectively.

The funding comes from two programs administered by U.S. federal agencies that award research grants: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) that target small businesses conducting scientific or engineering research with commercial potential. HemoSonics’ SBIR grants were awarded by National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute at NIH. The Office of Naval Research grant came under STTR.

With this funding, HemoSonics plans to develop a point-of-care diagnostic device called the Global Hemostasis Analyzer, which will bring the technology to the patient’s bedside and help eliminate the guesswork often associated with bleeding conditions. The University of Virginia Patent Foundation has filed two international patent applications on this technology, which it licenses to HemoSonics for further development and commercialization.

Update: Link fixed, 8 October 2010

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