Bel Air-based medical device company Graftworx received $500,000 from the Maryland Venture Fund, the state announced.
With the new funding, the company announced the hiring of Lilip Lau, who invented a coronary stent while at Guidant. Graftworx is developing a stent to treat peripheral artery disease (PAD).
The money will also be used to complete pre-clinical trials, officials said.
When treating PAD, surgeons implant stents to bypass areas of the artery where blood flow is blocked. But there remains a high-risk that the stent itself will become blocked, which can lead to other complications, and, in some cases, amputations.
Graftworx is developing a stent with sensors that can connect to smartphones, and alert surgeons when there might be blockage.
“We are proud to make this investment in GraftWorx and look forward to their growth and success here in Maryland,” DBEDSecretary Mike Gill said. “Small, innovative companies like GraftWorx are critical to Maryland’s economy.”