Neural Prosthesis Recipient to Keynote 2003 Neurotech Leaders Forum

Jennifer French, one of the first recipients of an experimental standing/transfer prosthesis that allows paraplegics to stand up using their own paralyzed leg muscles, will deliver the keynote talk at the 2003 Neurotech Leaders Forum in San Francisco. The event, a full-day management and investment conference directed at neurotechnology executives, entrepreneurs, and investors, will be held at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport on September 9, 2003.

French sustained an incomplete spinal cord injury in 1998 and subsequently received a surgically implanted stimulation system, which was developed at the Cleveland FES Center. The device uses electrical stimulation to activate the leg, trunk, and back muscles, allowing her to stand out of the wheelchair and move around using a walker. French now serves as executive director of a new nonprofit organization called Society To Increase Mobility (STIM). STIM's goal is to educate the public and increase media awareness of neural prostheses, functional electrical stimulation, and related technologies that stand to benefit individuals with neurological disorders. The title of her talk is "Neurotechnology: The User's Perspective."

Other sessions at the 2003 Neurotech Leaders Forum will be devoted to market opportunities for neurostimulation and neurodiagnostic devices. A special entrepreneur's panel will feature presentations from CEOs of six start-up and early-stage neurotechnology firms. Presenting companies include Afferent Corp., a Providence, RI manufacturer of sensory stimulation devices for treatment of stroke; Cyberkinetics Inc., a Foxborough, MA manufacturer of brain-computer interfaces and electrode arrays; Robomedica Inc., a Culver City, CA manufacturer of robotic walking systems and training technologies; Cyclotec AMT, a Lauderhill, FL manufacturer of wireless stimulation devices for pain treatment; and Epic Biosonics, a Victoria, British Columbia manufacturer of a totally implantable cochlear prosthesis. A morning session on neurotechnology capital markets will feature a panel discussion include venture capitalists from several leading VC firms in the field.

The 2003 Neurotech Leaders Forum is produced by Neurotech Reports, the San Francisco, CA publisher of the Neurotech Business Report and several market research reports in the industry. Quallion LLC, a Sylmar, CA manufacturer of batteries for implanted stimulators, is the Platinum Sponsor of the event. Neurotech Reports editor and publisher James Cavuoto will serve as moderator for several sessions. Warren Grill, Ph.D., associate professor of biomedical engineering at Case Western Reserve University, will also serve as a moderator. Grill, who is also a senior technical editor of Neurotech Business Report, is one of the nation's leading experts in neural stimulation and a principal investigator at the Cleveland FES Center.

More information on the event and the market for neurotechnology can be found at


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