Shamefully, it’s taken me over a year to return to this post. I am grateful to say that it is because my journey has been filled with the excitement of being on the team of a fantastic medical device startup. At the time I wrote, “Climbing aboard the Falcon,” I didn’t realize how apt the metaphor would be. In March of 2017, I had the good fortune of meeting a scrappy team that had bootstrapped an idea into a working prototype and treated patients with encouraging results. This band of rebels saw true desperation in their field and turned to an innovative solution that is elegant in its simplicity.
As a society, we often assign the term innovation to catapulting technologies that seem born from the genius of a savant. My operating definition of innovation is a bit less ambitious. It’s simply the combination of novelty and utility. The inventors of GammaTile™ took a novel approach to craft a solution that has real utility for patients with brian tumors by combining existing, but disparate technologies. Given the 15 patents that have been granted, I’d say they met the qualification of novel. And the patients who have received this treatment can attest to its utility in combating recurrent brain tumors while reducing patient and caregiver burden.
The founders’ practical approach to a real world problem is the foundation for what is now GT Medical Technologies, Inc. In the past 16 months, my ride through the galaxy has included convincing the founders to stand up an operating company, recruiting a seasoned CEO, helping to build a team, and raising the first round of capital. During this journey, I’ve seen things, been places, and met people that I once dreamt about. Honestly, I had largely given up on many of those dreams, as people often do when reaching the realities of mid-life.
I am grateful (it seems like too small a word in this context) to the founders for providing me with this opportunity. So, a big thank you to Drs. Brachman, Nakaji, McBride, and Yousseff and the irrepressible Ms. Thomas.
The company recently achieved some important milestones and we are now raising a Series A to support our commercial launch which is planned for later this year. We’ve already had a very positive reception from our first round of pitches and have several more scheduled. Not unlike the work of the Rebellion, our recent successes have opened the door to battle the emperor of all maladies on more fronts and much remains to be done.
So, after a very brief stop at a cantina on Tatooine, it’s back on the Falcon. See you on the other side of the Kessel Run…