Innovative Curtin-led medical start-up takes important step forward

An innovative medical start-up based on an orthopaedic screw that aims to improve patient outcomes in complex surgeries has taken a major step forward, raising $1.15 million from private investors based in Western Australia.

REX Ortho Pty Ltd, an orthopaedic medical device company that is developing a range of products, was established after a team of researchers and surgeons from Curtin University and St John of God Subiaco Hospital developed a removable, expandable titanium screw (REX Screw) that aims to assist in complex surgeries to treat hip fractures and other bone injuries, as well as spinal conditions.

In addition to its first capital raising, REX Ortho has also announced Dr Richard Hopkins, an experienced medical technology executive, Mr Lucas Kong, an experienced mechanical engineer, and Mr Russell Nicholls, an experienced IP management and licensing executive who is also Curtin’s Deputy Director of Commercialisation, will join the company’s Board of Directors.

Curtin University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research Professor Chris Moran said the new developments marked an exciting step forward in the start-up’s progress from leading Curtin research.

“By raising $1.15 million from private investors, REX Ortho will be able to transform the innovative orthopaedic screw developed by a team of engineers and surgeons into a real-world solution that may benefit patients all over the world requiring complex surgeries,” Professor Moran said.

“This exciting medical technology start-up will now be working to partner with a major global manufacturer, bringing the innovative product a step closer to market.”

REX Ortho Executive Chairman Mr Ian Brown said he was delighted with the calibre of the new board appointments.

“We are thrilled to close the oversubscribed first capital raising round and form such a strong Board of Directors to lend their vast experience and expertise to REX Ortho,” Mr Brown said.

“Their leadership in the medical technology and engineering sectors will be invaluable to REX Ortho in the years ahead as we aim to transform the treatment paradigm of orthopaedic fixation and build a broad pipeline of innovative fixation devices.”

The REX Screw – developed by Curtin’s Dr Matthew Oldakowski, Mrs Intan Oldakowska, Professor Garry Allison and Professor Brett Kirk; Orthopaedic Surgeons Professor Philip Hardcastle, Professor Markus Kuster and Professor Gabriel Lee (from St John of God Subiaco Hospital), and Perth entrepreneur Mr Ian Brown – was named the overall winner in the 2018 Curtinnovation Awards.

For more information about REX Ortho, visit here:

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