Esculon LLC has received a $150,000 Small Business Innovation Research Phase I grant from the National Science Foundation, and $97,500 matching funding from the Nebraska Department of Economic Development to develop an innovative product for post-op surgical care. The company is based in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Last year, the company also received a $50,000 prototype grant from DED to launch the product’s design.
The medical device is a small-bore chest tube that is inserted into patients who have undergone cardiothoracic surgery to ensure proper post-surgical drainage. Approximately 750,000 major cardiothoracic surgeries are performed yearly. Existing chest drainage systems, which have not been updated in decades, have been known to be ineffective at draining fluid, sometimes leading to major post-surgical complications, life-threatening conditions, longer hospital stays and increased health care costs.
This new device is designed to minimize any potential injury to surrounding organs that may occur with larger tubes. It also is expected to facilitate proper fluid drainage thereby promoting full healing and recovery in less time.
“The medical technology industry provides high-quality jobs, such as those in research, development, and manufacturing, but most opportunities are clustered on the coasts,” said Evan Luxon, President/CEO of Esculon LLC. “As a native Nebraskan, I am excited for Esculon to play a part in growing the state’s nascent medtech ecosystem, thanks in part to funding from NSF and DED.”
The Business Innovation Act provides funding to help Nebraska businesses develop new technologies that lead to quality job opportunities across the state. Competitive grants provide funding and technical assistance for research at Nebraska institutions, new product development and testing, and help expand small business and entrepreneur outreach efforts. The SBIR/STTR Initiative supports applications to the federal Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer program with a Phase 0 Planning Grant and subsequent Phase I and II match for successful applicants.