Newswise — Philadelphia, February 5, 2020 – The Pennsylvania Pediatric Medical Device Consortium (PPDC) has announced its latest round of seed grants to companies developing medical devices for children. The Consortium chose four projects from eight finalists in a competition to receive seed grants of $50,000 each.

The devices are a less-invasive method of inserting pacemaker leads for cardiac therapies, a novel bioprosthetic pulmonary valved conduit for congenital heart surgery, a mechanically customized physical therapy system, and a novel device to improve the outcomes of pediatric hip surgery.

Funded by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and based at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), the PPDC provides know-how and seed funding to help innovators translate promising ideas into commercial medical devices for use in children. The PPDC is a collaboration involving CHOP, the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine and sciVelo of the University of Pittsburgh, Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania.

The new round of awards is the seventh by the PPDC, following seed grants announced in February 2015, January 2016, January 2017, October 2017, July 2018, and May 2019.

“The sponsored projects chosen for support this year represent novel approaches to address major unmet needs for pediatric medical devices,” said cardiologist Robert J. Levy, MD, of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, the Consortium’s Principal Investigator. 

Children's National Hospital of Washington, D.C. and PeriCor LLC of Bethesda, M.D. are developing the PeriPath, an access tool that enables single incision delivery of cardiac therapies for children.  Children who suffer from arrhythmias require a pacemaker or implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), and open chest surgery is performed to connect the leads for these devices. The PeriPath presents a less invasive method of implanting cardiac therapy leads in pediatric patients. 

TGen Tech, LLC, headquartered at Tech Alpharetta in Georgia, is developing a differentiated Pulmonary Valved Conduit to improve the clinical outcomes of substitute conduit arteries in infants and children with Congenital Heart Defects (CHD).  An estimated 2.5 million patients in the US have a CHD, which includes 40,000 newborns annually. Several thousand of these patients have a defect that requires the use of a non-native conduit artery, such as a bovine jugular vein (BJV), to replace structures that are congenitally absent or hypoplastic. TGen Tech uses patented decellularization and physical fixation technology for valved conduit devices to augment the already recognized qualities of BJV and several other cardiovascular applications, including heart valve repair and replacement devices. For more information, visit

The Venture Development Center and Physical Therapy Department at the University of Delaware are collaborating to develop the DE-AFO. This ankle-foot orthosis (AFO), designed by Ahad Behboodi, PhD and his team, utilizes electro-active polymer as artificial muscles to assist ankle motion in children with cerebral palsy (CP).  CP, the most common neurological disorder in the pediatric population, is often associated with ankle control deficiencies. The DE-AFO is a compact and comfortable smart AFO for children with CP to help them walk easier and longer.

The University of Pittsburgh received funding for a Dynamic Hip Stabilization Tether for developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH).  DDH is the incorrect development of the hip joint, which can lead to abnormal gait, decreased strength, and increased rate of degenerative hip and knee joint diseases. This project plans to create a surgically inserted tethering device to improve outcomes of hip stabilization surgery on pediatric patients.

Applications for PPDC funding opportunities are accepted from throughout the U.S. The Consortium also accepts applications year-round for in-kind services and expert advice.

For more information on the PPDC, visit 

About Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia was founded in 1855 as the nation’s first pediatric hospital. Through its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional patient care, training new generations of pediatric healthcare professionals and pioneering major research initiatives, Children’s Hospital has fostered many discoveries that have benefited children worldwide. Its pediatric research program is among the largest in the country. In addition, its unique family-centered care and public service programs have brought the 564-bed hospital recognition as a leading advocate for children and adolescents. For more information, visit