Nexeon Medsytems is a medical device company focused on providing innovative neurostimulation products for patients suffering from debilitating neurological diseases, including Parkinson’s and essential tremor. It was founded in 2005 with the goal of changing how innovative ideas in the medical device industry move from concept to reality, with a focus on creating solutions for clinicians in their pursuit of improving patient outcomes.
Medgadget had the opportunity to ask Will Rosellini, CEO of Nexeon, some questions about Nexeon, and their plans for the future.
Conn Hastings, Medgadget: Can you tell us a little about your background and how you became interested in this type of technology?
Will Rosellini, Nexeon: As a minor league baseball player at the age of 22, I realized I wasn’t going to be going to the big leagues despite all my training and physical attributes that should have made it possible. I determined what separated me from the best of the best was my own nervous system and the way it reacted to situations with high adrenaline states. This set me down the road of my life’s passion to understand the nervous system and translational neurotechnology. I went on earn six graduate degrees and used that knowledge to understand the failure modes associated with converting clinical ideas and discoveries into real innovative products that can impact the global disease burden.
Medgadget: Please give us a brief overview of the products Nexeon has developed, and those in the pipeline.
Will Rosellini: Nexeon’s main focus is finishing and launching a next generation deep brain stimulation (DBS) system for patients living with neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and essential tremor. DBS works much like a pacemaker in that an implantable battery sends small electrical signals through a wire, but instead of the wire going to the heart it actually goes into the brain where it can help regulate a malfunctioning network within the nervous system. While DBS has been on market for nearly three decades, it has seen very little innovation. Our system is designed to harness recent advances in technology and sense a patient brain activity to better understand the various disease states and then ultimately respond to neurological changes with custom, tailored stimulation.
Medgadget: What disease states are currently treatable using these types of technology?
Will Rosellini: The most common disease states treated with this type of technology are chronic pain, Parkinson’s, essential tremor, dystonia, incontinence, and epilepsy. Some of the more noted therapies emerging or under development include depression, obsessive compulsive disorder and Alzheimer’s. By tapping into the nervous system’s inherent electrical network, there are countless diseases that could be treated where normal pharma therapy is failing.
Medgadget: One of Nexeon’s past projects involved cyborg eye implants. Please tell us a little about this.
Will Rosellini: Well, in fact I worked as creator/writer on the Deus Ex: Human Revolutions series which was set in the world of cyborg enhancement. I got a chance to write the science fiction of what would happen in 2027, which isn’t that dis-similar from what I do in my job today. We pushed the envelope, I suppose, and in some cases science fiction merged with actual products being developed by companies like Second Sight and its implanted cyborg eye.
Medgadget: One area of research is using this type of technology to erase or even implant memories. Can you tell us how this might be achieved?
Will Rosellini: This isn’t far-fetched at all. My previous company had preclinical results showing that you could erase memories associated with PTSD. Ted Berger at USC is creating a hippocampal chip capable of creating new capacity for storing memories. DARPA, the research arm of the DoD has funded nearly $50M across 3 projects to enhance these approaches.
Medgadget: Where do you see this area going in the next 10–20 years? Do you think brain implants to make us smarter will become commonplace?
Will Rosellini: There is a revolution in neurotech that is converging with an emerging sub-sector of Internet of Things (IoT) – what has started to be called the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT). The IoMT refers to a connected infrastructure of medical devices and software applications that can communicate with various healthcare IT systems. The IoMT is being leveraged to improve medical care by integrating neurological data with other biometric diagnostics, thus providing medical professionals with richer information with which to make their decisions. The ability to link real-time neural recordings, imaging, wearable diagnostic devices, and many other sources of data will produce insights to the human condition unlike ever seen before.
Once this level of connectivity is achieved, the addressable neurotechnology market will widen significantly as these therapies start to improve patient outcomes whilst also reducing the overall burden of management.
See a video about Nexeon’s deep brain stimulation technology for Parkinson’s therapy here:
Link: Nexeon Medsytems…