State-backed fund strengthens Monroe company’s medical device


A Connecticut venture capital fund is backing a Monroe startup seeking Food and Drug Administration approval for a device to help relieve a urologic disorder affecting millions of women.

In April, Gloria and Eric Kolb, residents of Newtown, obtained U.S. patent protection for the Elidah device from Elidah based in Monroe to help women with stress urinary incontinence, with the Elitone device emitting mild electrical impulses to stimulate and strengthen the pelvic muscles.

Women diagnosed with the condition may experience urinary leakage during physical exertion or when coughing or sneezing. To date, doctors have recommended solutions ranging from exercises to surgical implants called pelvic meshes, with thousands of lawsuits filed against three device makers in recent years after women suffered side effects.

The Elideh Elitone System can be worn during the day, providing 20 minutes of electrical stimulation delivered by a flexible, non-invasive device worn under clothing.

“It’s such a huge market – one in three women over 30 has this problem,” said CEO Gloria Kolb.

In late July, state-backed Connecticut Innovations venture capital fund pledged to invest up to $ 750,000 in Elidah, following funding from America’s Seed Fund. from the National Science Foundation’s Small Business Innovation Research program. Elidah is in the process of raising up to $ 2 million in additional funding to begin marketing the device if it is approved by the FDA.

Gloria Kolb is originally from California and a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology which, more than a decade ago, was hailed by the MIT Technology Review as one of the country’s top innovators under 35. She and Eric met as colleagues at Johnson & Johnson, then left to started Fossa Medical in Boston, which developed a new technique for removing kidney stones, but failed in its attempt to challenge giants of the world. industry like Boston Scientific for major hospital contracts.

The couple moved to southwest Connecticut, where Gloria was director of venture capital development for UConn Ventures, also leading Kolb Consultants, advising on medical device development.

“From that first Fossa company – which was in urology – I knew incontinence for women was a huge problem,” she said. “We looked at the options and saw an opportunity – you have been told by doctors to do exercises to strengthen these muscles on your own, and the next step is surgery. There is a big gap between the two.

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