Surgical Innovation Program

Our mission is to transform surgical care by fostering, supporting, and accelerating innovation.

We do this by:

  • Providing support and strategic guidance to clinicians within DoS throughout the technology development and commercialization process.
  • Implementing programs and initiatives within DoS, and in collaboration with other departments across OHSU, that provide education on the innovation and commercialization process and bring together interdisciplinary teams to develop technological solutions to unmet clinical needs.
  • Building strategic industry and academic partnerships to support technology development and adoption of cutting-edge innovations within DoS.
  • Working cross-departmentally and regionally to facilitate collaborations and coalesce and leverage innovation resources and expertise


Biomedical Innovation: Commercialization Readiness Program (virtual) | September 3, 2021

Enrollment open for the virtual Biomedical Innovation: Commercialization Readiness Program.

  • When: The series kicks off Friday, September 10 and will meet once a week (4-hours) until Friday, October 5.
  • What: This 5-week interactive course will help you connect with potential customers to help advance your early-stage technology or innovation.
  • Learn more and enroll HERE by Friday, September 3, 2021
  • Have questions? Contact Sarah Biber, PhD,

Invent-a-thon FemTech Social Hour (virtual) | September 28, 2021


Invent-a-thon FemTech Social Hour

  • When: Tuesday, September 28, 2021, 4 - 5 pm (Pacific Time)
  • What: Join us on SpatialChat to hear from two rising stars in digital health and medtech,  Melissa Hanna, Co-founder and CEO of Mahmee, and Holly Rockweiler, Co-founder and CEO of Madorra. Learn about how they got their start and how their exceptional startups are empowering women and advancing health equity. Stay to mingle and network with fellow providers, entrepreneurs, and researchers on our unique and fun virtual-reality platform.
  • Where:  SpatialChat
  • Registration: Learn more and REGISTER HERE for free.


Invent Seminar: Launch your idea with market research and customer outreach

This event was for innovators and entrepreneurs in biosciences and healthcare who are interested in how to take an idea to market.  Four panelists will share tips and tricks from their 60+ years of combined experience successfully launching and commercializing healthcare technologies.  The panelists include three CEOs leading thriving Portland-based startups and a professional healthcare market strategy consultant. Come learn what strategies you can employ to gain an understanding of your market and customers and to better position your idea or technology for the next stage.

The event took place on Thursday, June 25, 2020, 1 to 2:30 p.m.  Click here to listen to the seminar.


Aaron Call, founding principle, Jaunt
Holly Rockweiler, CEO and co-founder, Madorra
Fahti Khosrowshahi, CEO and founder, Ceek Women’s Health
Patti White, CEO and co-founder, Hemex Health

Foresight 2019-2020 Niche Assessment Program

Foresight Science & Technology's Niche Assessment program provides awardees with market insight and data that can be used to help strategically position their technology in the marketplace, develop their commercialization plans for their Phase II application, and expose them to potential partners. The program is designed to help small businesses jump start their commercialization efforts. All active HHS (NIH, CDC, FDA) SBIR/STTR Phase I awardees and Phase I Fast-Track awardees (by grant or contract) are eligible to apply. Apply today.

Biomedical Innovation Program (BIP) Device, Diagnostic, and Software

Applications open for Biomedical Innovation Program (BIP) Device, Diagnostic, and Software funding.

    • Receive up to $40,000 to advance your early-stage medical technology
    • Letters of intent due Monday, September 27, 2021
    • Learn more and APPLY HERE

Have questions or want guidance on your application? Contact Sarah Biber, PhD,

2021 Biomedical Innovation Program Drug Discovery RFA

Application for OCTRI BIP Drug Discovery Track Due April 21

This funding opportunity is intended for drug discovery platforms and therapeutic technology projects. Examples of responsive application topics include, but are not limited to: development and validation of drug targets, screening platforms, small molecules, antibodies, vaccines and biologics. Through this funding mechanism, OCTRI, and OHSU Collaborations & Entrepreneurship, intend to support and accelerate creative, interdisciplinary drug discovery and therapeutic development research at OHSU. Projects will typically be supported for a one-year period. Predetermined milestones and quantitative metrics of success will be evaluated on a regular basis.

Deadline: Applications are due April 21, 2021

Amount: Up to $60,000 

Eligibility: Principal Investigators must meet the OHSU eligibility requirements.

View the 2021 Biomedical Innovation Program Drug Discovery RFA for details about the submission process, eligibility and application instructions.

Oregon Bio

The Oregon Bioscience Association invites high school through post-doctoral researchers as well as bio entrepreneurs leading early- and later-stage startups from Oregon and Southwest Washington to compete in Oregon Bio’s expanded pitch events. Scientists and companies in the areas of biopharma, medical device, diagnostics and digital health are eligible. Entrants are asked to show how their work/intel explores a current bio-problem and what solutional, transformative approach they’ve derived. The categories are:

  • Basic Research
  • Translational Research
  • Early-Stage Startup
  • Later-Stage Startup

Compete for $10k in prizes.

Apply to pitch at #ORBioDigital. Apps due 10/8/2020 at


  • About:  The IDEA Fund will provide three main types of support: startup, proof-of-concept, and educational.

    Startup funding is open to researchers who are part of an OHSU-associated startup. These startups can apply for a total of up to $30,000 in funding; up to $15,000 in seed funding for new startups and up to $15,000 in SBIR or STTR grant matching support. Funds are intended to be used by startups for technology research and development, intellectual property protection, regulatory assistance and more.

    Proof-of-concept support will provide funding for BIP projects; for example, the recent BIP COVID-19 Rapid Response opportunity was funded through the IDEA Fund. This funding will also aim to provide follow-on funding for BIP projects and expand support of existing technology development programs.

    Educational support will go to existing programs that encourage innovation and commercialization at OHSU, such as the programs under OHSU Collaborations and Entrepreneurship. Ideas for similar programs could also potentially be supported.

    There is no specified minimum or maximum funding amount for proof-or-concept and educational awards, but awards will be commensurate with project scope and the amount of available funds.

  • To learn more contact
  • Amount: Up to $30,000; $15,000 in seed funding, $15,000 in SBIR or STTR grant matching
  • Deadline: Rolling
  • How to apply: Submit an application form to


New Investigator Grant

  • About: Through this award, the MRF supports promising new investigators in biomedical research. Principal investigators must be at the beginning of an independent career with a faculty position at one of Oregon's colleges or universities. A letter of support from the department chair or the institute director must accompany each application describing the independence of the principal investigator and the commitment of the unit to that investigator and their research program. To learn more contact .
  • Amount: Up to $50,000
  • Deadline: April 15, August 15, December 15
  • How to apply: Complete application found here 


Early Clinical Investigator Grant

  • About: Through this award, the MRF supports promising biomedical exploration and the development of research careers in clinical investigation in Oregon. Principal investigators must be a post-doctoral trainee or clinical fellow with specific plans for a career in clinical research. A letter of support from the department chair or division head and from the director of the training program must accompany each application. The Applicant Qualifications Form should be completed by the applicant's mentor and included with the application and support letters.  To learn more contact .
  • Amount: Up to $30,000
  • Deadline: April 15, August 15, December 15
  • How to apply: Complete application found here


Early-stage Technology Award Program

  • About: Every other month, OHSU Technology Transfer offers a technology development award to support promising early-stage technologies. Technologies are selected based on novelty and market opportunity, as well as the initial data provided with the technology disclosure. This program is supported by OHSU Technology Transfer (TT). To learn more contact
  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Deadline: Rolling
  • How to apply: Submit a technology disclosure form to


Collins Medical Research Trust

  • About: The OHSU Foundation coordinates OHSU's relationship with the Collins Medical Trust which provides funds "To aid, further, promote, develop, encourage and sponsor research, experiment and work in the cause, cure and treatment of human disease or in any field of medical research, and to aid, further and promote medical education." To learn more visit O2 and the Collins Medical Trust. For questions or to reach out to the trust, please contact Juli Bailey ( ) or
  • Amount: Up to $30,000 per project
  • Upcoming Deadlines: October 9, 2020
  • How to apply: Submit a notice of intent to at the OHSU Foundation


Phase 0 and 00 SBIR/STTR Grants Program

  • About: Business Oregon provides Phase 0 and 00 grants to help researchers and businesses prepare better applications for the highly competitive SBIR/STTR program. Phase 0 grants go to businesses pursuing federal Phase I SBIR/STTR grant funds, while Phase 00 grants help businesses going for federal Phase II or Fast-Track grants.  To Learn more visit Business Oregon and review Program Guidelines
  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Next Deadline: Rolling (proposals should be submitted to Business Oregon at least 6 weeks prior to SBIR/STTR grant deadline)
  • How to apply: Submit an application to Mark Brady (


NIH HEAL Initiative: Translational Development of Devices to Treat Pain U18


The purpose of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to support preclinical development and demonstration of safe, effective, and non-addictive device-based technologies and approaches to treat pain. The goal of the program is to demonstrate treatment using credible neural targets for device-based interventions and/or diagnostics for pain, building upon the latest mechanistic knowledge about the anatomy and physiology of central, spinal, and peripheral pathways involved in pain. Awarded activities will facilitate the translation of new devices up to the stage of readiness for first in human (FIH) clinical trials by overcoming key challenges identified during preliminary proof-of-concept studies. The scope of the program includes technology development and optimization, and studies to prepare for approvals for human use. This is a milestone-driven cooperative agreement program and will involve participation of NIH program staff in the development of the project plan and monitoring of research progress.     

Funding available: Up to $500,000 in direct costs

More information: Learn more here and via the RFA

Application deadline: Multiple throughout the year


Biomedical Innovation Program (BIP) – Digital Health

Do you have an idea for a new digital health technology to improve healthcare delivery or advance biomedical research that has the potential to be commercialized, achieve cost savings, enhance research efficiency, improve quality of patient care and/or reduce provider burnout? If so, I strongly encourage you to apply for an internal grant that is now available through OCTRI’s new Biomedical Innovation Program (BIP) - Digital Health. Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis for up to $30,000

Connect with us:

Please submit a request here to be connected with any of the support described below.

For OHSU Community Members:

Please  submit a request to be connected with any of the support described below (available to all members of the OHSU community)

Support Description
Industry Partnerships We can help facilitate partnerships with everything from large industry partners to startup companies for joint technology development, sponsored research, and more.
Academic Collaborations We can help connect you with academic collaborators within OHSU and at other regional universities for joint technology development, and other innovation activities.

For External Partners and Collaborators:

Are you a prospective academic or industry partner interested in a potential collaboration with the Department of Surgery? 


Dr. Biber has led the Surgical Innovation Program at OHSU since 2019 and has been actively engaged in the healthcare innovation sector over the past six years. She most recently served as the Assistant Director for NIH’s National Center for Data to Health (CD2H), based out of the OCTRI. While at the CD2H, she played a critical role in launching the center and co-led initiatives to facilitate informatics innovation, data sharing, software development, and collaboration across the Clinical Translational Science Awards Program. Prior to her CD2H role, she was Entrepreneurial Program Director at the Oregon Bioscience Incubator where she helped grow the incubator three-fold and spearheaded statewide programs and partnerships to support entrepreneurs and startups. During this time she also served as chair of the Startup Resource Workgroup for the Portland Innovation Quadrant and co-founded Accelerate Biotech and Digital Health PDX.

Dr. Biber is thrilled to be serving as Innovation Manager for the Department of Surgery. She enjoys working with early stage entrepreneurs to help them successfully launch, develop, and raise funds for technologies and working collaboratively with others across OHSU and the community to build strategies, programs, and partnerships to advance innovation.