The Texas Medical Center (TMC) Innovation Institute has welcomed 11 startups selected from more than 100 applications to its accelerator program, TMCx, which for the first time is focusing exclusively on medical devices. This is the third installment of TMCx, a program that couples the resources of the world’s largest medical center with the innovative spark of entrepreneurs.

Over the next 15 weeks, the companies will learn and collaborate with some of the top industry experts to take their medical device from concept to commercialization. They will also be introduced to stakeholders at the 56 member institutions within the Texas Medical Center with the goal of meeting the needs of patient care. Not only will these companies tap into business experts in that field, but will also have access to a large collection of top physicians and scientists all on one campus, which serves over 8.2 million patients annually.

“Very few accelerators have a robust program devoted to medical device startups, so we are filling a huge gap in the life sciences ecosystem,” says Erik M. Halvorsen, PhD, director of the TMC Innovation Institute. “Now we are the only accelerator in the country that runs alternating curriculum tracks on med devices and digital health, which will bolster our efforts to attract top talent in health care innovation.”

Hailing from TexasNew York, and California (among other states) and global counterparts including Mexico, companies accepted into the third TMCx class include:

  • Allotrope Medical (Houston) provides precise ureter identification during minimally invasive surgery.
  • Bloom Labs (New York) has a credit-card sized rescue inhaler for asthmatics.
  • Blumio (San Francisco) is creating a sensor that can measure blood pressure continuously, without the need to rely on the use of an inflatable cuff.
  • Briteseed (Chicago) develops smart surgical tools that make surgeons more confident.
  • Flexios (Houston) provides streamlined surgical solutions for tendon repair that improve strength, smoothness, and patient satisfaction.
  • IntuiTap Medical (Houston) has a handheld device that eliminates the guesswork from spinal taps.
  • NovaScan (Milwaukee, Wis) is pioneering an oncology diagnostic platform that provides highly accurate, instantaneous detection of cancer without capital equipment.
  • Otricath (Houston) is a catheter system changing the rules in the delivery of liver cancer treatment.
  • Voyager Biomedical (College Station, Texas) is creating a better solution for vascular access in dialysis patients.
  • WeaRobot (Monterrey, Mexico) is an active exoskeleton for seniors and the physically impaired.
  • WestFace Medical (Seattle) puts imaging at the tip of any needle providing clinician guidance to improve clinical outcomes, lower costs and increase patient satisfaction.

Within the TMCx program, the selected medical device startups will receive a comprehensive and practical curriculum to assist participating founders on their entrepreneurial path. Successful investors, entrepreneurs, subject-matter experts, industry professionals and hospital leaders guide each startup in the areas of intellectual property, product development, regulatory strategies, health policy, marketing, fundraising, contract negotiations and communications. In addition, TMCx companies participate in the accelerator without the requirement to provide equity in return.

The graduating companies from the program will give their final pitch in front of advisors, hospital stakeholders and investors as part of Demo Day at the end of the curriculum on Nov. 17, 2016.

Applications for the fourth TMCx class, focused on digital health, will be accepted beginning August 17. The class will run from early 2017 until June 2017. For more information, visit the TMC Innovation Institute.