Current Surgical Awarded NSF Grant

Current Surgical Awarded Competitive Grant from the National Science Foundation

Small Business Innovation Research Program Provides Seed Funding for R&D

Washington, D.C., May 12, 2021 – Current Surgical Inc. has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant for $256,000 to conduct research and development (R&D) work on a smart surgical needle for the treatment of solid tumors.

Current Surgical is developing a smart surgical needle to enable the next generation of minimally invasive therapies. Patients with unresectable tumors are forced to choose between a number of non-curative treatments that have poor outcomes and significant side effects. Current Surgical is conducting R&D to combine high resolution sensors and real-time image analysis in one tool that will give doctors precise control and feedback while treating these tumors.

“This Phase 1 SBIR grant from the NSF will help fuel the fundamental engineering research to develop our proposed technology,” said Dr. Chris Wagner, Current Surgical co-founder and CTO. “We are excited to have the opportunity to develop technology that gives doctors the tools they need to improve outcomes for cancer patients.”

“NSF is proud to support the technology of the future by thinking beyond incremental developments and funding the most creative, impactful ideas across all markets and areas of science and engineering,” said Andrea Belz, Division Director of the Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships at NSF. “With the support of our research funds, any deep technology startup or small business can guide basic science into meaningful solutions that address tremendous needs.”

“Receiving an SBIR grant from the NSF is such an important milestone for us,” added Dr. Al Mashal, Current Surgical co-founder and CEO. “Not only is it an affirmation of the science behind our technology, but it makes it possible for us to overcome a number of R&D challenges as we enable the next generation of microinvasive surgery.”

Once a small business is awarded a Phase I SBIR/STTR grant (up to $256,000), it becomes eligible to apply for a Phase II (up to $1,000,000). Small businesses with Phase II funding are eligible to receive up to $500,000 in additional matching funds with qualifying third-party investment or sales.

Startups or entrepreneurs who submit a three-page Project Pitch will know within one month if they meet the program’s objectives to support innovative technologies that show promise of commercial and/or societal impact and involve a level of technical risk. Small businesses with innovative science and technology solutions, and commercial potential are encouraged to apply. All proposals submitted to the NSF SBIR program, also known as America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, undergo a rigorous merit-based review process. To learn more about America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF, visit:

About Current Surgical: Current Surgical is a preclinical-stage company enabling a new generation of hybrid therapies through the development of smart surgical tools to allow doctors to precisely treat currently untreatable solid tumors.

About the National Science Foundation's Small Business Programs: America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF awards $200 million annually to startups and small businesses, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. Startups working across almost all areas of science and technology can receive up to $2 million to support research and development (R&D), helping de-risk technology for commercial success. America’s Seed Fund is congressionally mandated through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $8.5 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering.

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