RICHMOND, Calif., Oct. 28, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ekso Bionics Holdings, Inc. (OTCQB:EKSO), a robotic exoskeleton company, announced today that it has been awarded a P20 Exploratory Grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to continue the development of an exoskeleton prototype for children. This work will be done in collaboration with the pediatric rehabilitation department at the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland and will consist of Ekso Bionics developing a pediatric version of its Ekso GT™ robotic exoskeleton. Working with UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland allows for the effective integration of advanced robotics into a world-class pediatric rehabilitative practice.
Ekso Bionics is collaborating with Christine Aguilar, MD, Medical Director, Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine and Robert Haining, MD, Associate Director, Rehabilitation Medicine of UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland on suit design and function to be used for children with neurologic disorders that result in gait deficiencies such as spinal cord injury, stroke, traumatic brain injury and cerebral palsy. The suit will be developed for children aged five (approximately 42 inches tall and 40 pounds) to about eight years old(approximately 50 inches tall and 56 pounds). Doctors Aguilar and Haining are also providing input on potential clinical testing and implementation of the suits. Following the development of an effective pediatric prototype, Ekso and UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland will discuss a sequential Phase II Grant.
"Our department is very excited to be collaborating with Ekso Bionics," said Dr. Aguilar. "We believe the new prototype of exoskeleton will give children who have difficulty moving their legs the ability to walk."
"This NIH grant and partnership with UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland gives us the real opportunity to intervene early in a child's life and potentially help them improve their walking skills and overall quality of life," stated Katie Strausser, PhD and Director of Research at Ekso Bionics.
About UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland
UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland (formerly Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland) is a premier, not-for-profit medical center for children in Northern California, and is the only hospital in the East Bay 100% devoted to pediatrics. UCSF Benioff Oakland affiliated with UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco on January 1, 2014. UCSF Benioff Oakland is a national leader in many pediatric specialties including hematology/oncology, neonatology, cardiology, pulmonology, orthopedics, sports medicine, and neurosurgery. The hospital is one of only five ACS Pediatric Level I Trauma Centers in the state, and has one of largest pediatric intensive care units in Northern California. UCSF Benioff Oakland has 190 licensed beds, over 500 physicians in 43 specialties, more than 2,600 employees, and a consolidated annual operating budget of more than $500 million. UCSF Benioff Oakland is also a leading teaching hospital with an outstanding pediatric residency program and a number of unique pediatric subspecialty fellowship programs.
UCSF Benioff Oakland's research arm, Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI), is internationally known for its basic and clinical research. CHORI is at the forefront of translating research into interventions for treating and preventing human diseases. CHORI has 250 members of its investigative staff, a budget of about $50 million, and is ranked among the nation's top ten research centers for National Institutes of Health funding to children's hospitals. For more information, go to www.childrenshospitaloakland.org and www.chori.org.
About Ekso Bionics
Since 2005, Ekso Bionics has been pioneering the field of robotic exoskeletons, or wearable robots, to augment human strength, endurance and mobility. The company's first commercially available product called Ekso has helped thousands of people living with paralysis take millions of steps not otherwise possible. By designing and creating some of the most forward-thinking and innovative solutions for people looking to augment human capabilities, Ekso Bionics is helping people rethink current physical limitations and achieve the remarkable.
Ekso Bionics is headquartered in Richmond, CA and is listed on the OTC QB under the symbol EKSO. To learn more about Ekso Bionics please visit us at www.eksobionics.com
Any statements contained in this press release that do not describe historical facts may constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements may include, without limitation, statements regarding (i) the plans and objectives of management for future operations, including strategic and other plans or objectives relating to the design, development and commercialization of human exoskeletons, (ii) a projection of income (including income/loss), earnings (including earnings/loss) per share, capital expenditures, dividends, capital structure or other financial items, (iii) the Company's future financial performance and (iv) the assumptions underlying or relating to any statement described in points (i), (ii) or (iii) above. Such forward-looking statements are not meant to predict or guarantee actual results, performance, events or circumstances and may not be realized because they are based upon the Company's current projections, plans, objectives, beliefs, expectations, estimates and assumptions and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties and other influences, many of which the Company has no control over. Actual results and the timing of certain events and circumstances may differ materially from those described by the forward-looking statements as a result of these risks and uncertainties. Factors that may influence or contribute to the inaccuracy of the forward-looking statements or cause actual results to differ materially from expected or desired results may include, without limitation, the Company's inability to obtain adequate financing to fund the Company's operations and necessary to develop or enhance our technology, the significant length of time and resources associated with the development of the Company's products, the Company's failure to achieve broad market acceptance of the Company's products, the failure of our sales and marketing organization or partners to market our products effectively, adverse results in future clinical studies of the Company's medical device products, the failure to obtain or maintain patent protection for the Company's technology, failure to obtain or maintain regulatory approval to market the Company's medical devices, lack of product diversification, volatility in the price of the Company's raw materials, existing or increased competition, and the Company's failure to implement the Company's business plans or strategies. These and other factors are identified and described in more detail in the Company's filings with the SEC at http://www.sec.gov. The Company does not undertake to update these forward-looking statements.
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