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UMB’s CoapTech awarded $50K seed fund grant

CoapTech Inc., a Baltimore-based medical device company, announced Thursday it was awarded a $50,000 grant by the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Pennsylvania Pediatric Medical Device Consortium (“PPDC”) for its PUMA-G Peds System, a device designed to provide a safer way to place feeding tubes in children.

CoapTech commercializes the new platform called the PUMA System, which allows ultrasound to be utilized in hollow organ cavities.

The company was spun out of the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) where the technology was developed. UMB’s technology transfer arm, UM Ventures, Baltimore, also provided direct investment in the company. It was selected as a Medtech Innovator 2019 Best-in-Class Startup company and was named 2018 Maryland Incubator Company of the Year for Best Medical Device Company.

The PUMA System is a new category of minimally invasive devices, enabling ultrasound procedures in hollow organs of the body where previously it was impossible or unsafe to do so. The system is being developed to allow ultrasound-based placement of gastrostomy tubes in pediatric patients as an alternative to traditional endoscopic or fluoroscopic procedures.

Endoscopic procedures cannot “see through” tissue which can result in organ damage or other complications. Fluoroscopic procedures require the use of ionizing radiation which presents long term risk of cancer.

The PUMA-G Peds System uses ultrasound to visualize tissue and organs in real time without ionizing radiation. It is designed to operate like the currently available adult PUMA-G System, with modifications to accommodate the pediatric patient population.

The consortium chose CoapTech as one of five awardees from 10 finalists in competition to receive grants.