May 3, 2004 — Orthonics Inc., an Atlanta-based spinout of Georgia Institute of Technology, received initial funding from New York-based venture firm Viscogliosi Brothers LLC to develop microfabricated biomaterials for spinal disc repair and regeneration, according to a news release.
The funding provides a private-sector match for the company’s grant from VentureLab, a Georgia Research Alliance program that encourages commercialization of technologies developed in Georgia’s research universities. Terms were not disclosed.
Orthonics’ biomaterials could provide an alternative to spinal surgeries, where damaged discs are removed and vertebrae are fused. The company uses MEMS fabricating techniques to create micropatterns on the biomaterial’s surface that form a more natural attachment between the artificial material and bone or cartilage tissues, the release said.
Animal trials of the disc material could begin later this year, with human trials expected by 2006. Orthonics’ technology will require market approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.