According to the National Institute on Deafness and Communication Disorders, more than 300,000 people in the United States use cochlear implants to improve their ability to hear. However, because the implants cannot be repositioned after surgery, as many as 50 percent of
patients with the implants experience further decline in their natural hearing.
iotaMotion, Inc., an entrepreneurial company based in Iowa City and a client of Iowa Innovation Corporation (IICorp), has developed a system that allows surgeons to reposition electrodes in the implants as patients’ hearing levels change.
Using iotaMotion’s implantable robotics technologies, surgeons can remotely move the electrodes to achieve better longer-term outcomes of the devices, while reducing the trauma associated with additional cochlear surgeries.
iotaMotion is confident that its proprietary technology will expand the number of patients that will benefit from cochlear implants.
Last year, iotaMotion was awarded a Small Business Innovation Research Award by the National Science Foundation. The prestigious awards are presented to start-up companies with promising technological innovations and are granted to fewer than 20 percent of the applicants. The company will use the $225,000 grant to continue developing the technologies and take the product to market. In addition to the SBIR grant, iotaMotion received $25,000 in financial assistance from the Iowa Economic Development Authority and grant application assistance from IICorp.
“IICorp significantly increased the quality of our application and enabled us to get a NSF Phase I SBIR award on our first submission,” said Dr. Chris Kaufmann, president of iotaMotion. “The matching financial assistance has been invaluable for our business development.”
Learn more about iotaMotion and its innovative technologies here.