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“The Cities” awards: Cleveland Clinic Innovations named The Paragon

It’s hard to talk about the impact of Cleveland on the healthcare industry and vice versa without mentioning the institution that employs more than 39,000 northeast Ohioans and is consistently ranked as one of the country’s Top 5 hospitals. Its technology commercialization arm, which focuses solely on fostering innovation, is MedCity Media’s pick for The […]

It’s hard to talk about the impact of Cleveland on the healthcare industry and vice versa without mentioning the institution that employs more than 39,000 northeast Ohioans and is consistently ranked as one of the country’s Top 5 hospitals. Its technology commercialization arm, which focuses solely on fostering innovation, is MedCity Media’s pick for The Paragon award — an organization that demonstrates national or global excellence. MedCity Media’s “The Cities” awards honor the best, brightest and most innovative in Cleveland’s healthcare scene.

Cleveland Clinic Innovations, led by Executive Director Chris Coburn, leverages the ideas and technologies coming out of the Clinic by transforming promising therapies, devices and diagnostics into products through spinoff companies and licenses to existing companies. In its second decade of existence, CCI spins out more than 200 new inventions per year.

Last April, CCI opened the doors to its state-of-the-art, 50,000-square-foot Global Cardiovascular Innovation Center on Cedar Avenue, which now hosts 27 up-and-coming biomedical companies. Made possible through a $60 million grant from Ohio’s Third Frontier Program, GCIC focuses on the formation, attraction, expansion and retention of cardiovascular companies to create jobs and facilitate economic development in the region.

It’s doing that with startup companies that are already making a splash, like Explorys Medical Inc., the winner of MedCity Media’s Startup of the Year award. Another GCIC company, SironRX, just closed a $3.4 million round to fund clinical trials of its wound therapy technology and the hiring of senior management and clinical staff. CCI spinoff Cleveland HeartLab just rejected an acquisition offer to continue growing the company, which has 70 employees after its first two years.

But one CCI company did accept an acquisition offer this year: 2011 started off with a bang when neuromodulation technology company IntElect Medical was acquired by Boston Scientific for $78 million in January.

A week later, CCI signed a deal with Maryland-based MedStar Health to do just what it does in Cleveland — help develop and commercialize medical inventions from the system’s clinicians.

In addition to spinning off companies and licensing products, CCI also runs the Atrial Fibrillation Innovation Center, established in 2005, and the Clinical Tissue Engineering Center.

Next up for Cleveland Clinic Innovations is bringing together hundreds of the world’s top innovators for its annual Medical Innovations Summit in October, a testament to the global impact that makes CCI a true medical paragon in Cleveland.

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