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FORUM: Solutions to the Opioid Epidemic
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In this forum we will hear about recent government response to the devastation caused by addiction and the response of successful recipients of government funding in industry, both stand-alone companies and those collaborating with academia.

When: Wed Oct 3, 2018
5:30-8:30 PM
Where: Regis College, Fine Arts Center
235 Wellesley St
Weston, Massachusetts  02493
United States
Contact: Bill Munger

Online registration is closed.
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Oct 3 MDG Forum- MedTech Solutions to Opioid Epidemic 
The Worst Drug Crisis In US History:
Solutions to the Opioid Epidemic From
the Medical Device Industry
While no single device can address the totality of this epidemic, different devices may significantly impact treatment, abuse, overdoses and death.
Program Description  
In response to recommendations from the President's Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the FDA have called upon the medical device industry to step forward with technology that can prevent use, detect drug diversion and save the lives of those who have overdosed on opioids.

This request is backed by abundant funding for R&D in both contracts and grants.

As opioid addiction grew and permeated the country over the last 15 years, government, press, pharma, the medical profession, and others, with some notable exceptions, were caught unaware, and in some ways even facilitated this epidemic.

Finally, death rates in 2017 rose to 72,000, exceeding the entire Vietnam War total.

With longevity statistics declining for the first time in decades, and with so many Americans feeling the loss of young,otherwise healthy people, the curse of opioids can no longer remain unaddressed.

In this forum we will hear about recent government response to the devastation caused by addiction and the response of successful recipients of government funding in industry, both stand-alone companies and those collaborating with academia.


We hope you can join us
for the conversation.


Oct 3, 5:30 - 8:30 PM
Regis College Fine Arts Center
Weston, MA
MDG Boston Earlybird Forum Fees
   Member/Alliance Partner - $30   
   Non-member - $45 
   Student (member) - $10
   Student (non-member) - $15 
Gold Member - No Charge




Event Sponsorship - $500
   (Contact Hank Allard for details 
Who Should Attend: 
  • Managers whose companies have technology with potential applications to help in any aspect of drug use or abuse
  • Physicians involved with opiate prescribing, pain management, emergency room treatments, or otherwise interested in developments related to drug abuse
  • Scientists and engineers looking for means of furthering the development of their ideas for addressing this epidemic
  • Academics researching combatting drugs
Our Distinguished Panel
Bertha Madras, PhD    
Harvard Medical School  
Peter R Chai, MD 
Brigham and Women's Hospital,
Harvard Medical School     
Howard Levin, MD    
Managing Partner, President, and CSO,
Alejandro Zamorano    
VP of Business Development,
and CSO, PainQx
Mariana Matus, PhD     
CEO and Cofounder
Biobot Analytics
Panel Bios     
Bertha Madras, PhD - MODERATOR     
Harvard Medical School
Prof. Bertha Madras, PhD is a Harvard Medical School professor currently funded by NIDA to understand drug induced brain changes. She was the only non-government official to be appointed to the President's Commission on the opioid crisis, and had a lead role in formulating the recommendations, the majority of which are being implemented. Bertha had served as deputy drug czar in the Second Bush administration.

Harvard Medical School: Neuroscience research focus on addiction, Parkinson's disease, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Developed novel brain imaging probes for neuropsychiatric diseases, candidate therapeutics, and primate genotype/phenotype models of human genetic disorders.

Her current research focuses on drug effects on the developing adolescent brain. Author of >140 scientific manuscripts, co-editor of "The Cell Biology of Addiction", co-editor of 2014 books "Effects of Drug Abuse in the Human Nervous System", "Imaging of the Human Brain in Health and Disease" (Elsevier), author of 14 book chapters.

Peter R Chai, MD
Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School
“Using Digital Pills to Advance our Understanding of Safe Opioid Use”
Dr. Chai currently collaborates with eTectRx in developing the ID Cap, a digitized gelatin capsule that overencapsulates any medication to measure real time medication ingestion events. He has used the ID Cap as a novel method to detect opioid ingestion patterns in individuals discharged from the emergency department with acute fracture pain, and is working on developing smartphone interventions that respond to real-time opioid ingestion patterns detected by the ID Cap.

Howard Levin, MD
Managing Partner, President, and CSO, Coridea
“Respiratory Muscle Pacing to Combat Opioid Overdose”
Dr. Howard Levin, MD is a former heart transplant cadiologist at Johns Hopkins University is now an investor in medical startup companies, one of which, Coridea, has funding from NIDA to stimulate breathing in people at risk from, or who have overdosed. This stimulator may be permanently implanted or used externally in an emergency.  
In 2003, with Mark Gelfand, Dr. Levin co-founded Coridea, an idea generator that translates ideas into novel therapeutic solutions for clinical practice. His inventions and co-inventions have successfully launched or their patents helped launch companies including Ardian (Medtronic), CHF Solutions (Gambro), Respicardia (formerly, Cardiac Concepts), eValve (Abbott) and RenalGuard (PLC Medical), Cibiem and Soffio Medical.

Alejandro Zamorano
Managing Partner, President, and CSO, PainQx
“Objective, Quantifiable, Non-invasive Pain Evaluation”
PainQx is an A.I. powered diagnostic company that has developed a method to objectively measure pain. The PainQx platform achieves this by assessing neural activity using EEG from a patient’s brain and processing and decoding the data through proprietary algorithms. The output is a scaled pain biomarker correlates to a patient’s pain state.The PainQx platform will be used by physicians as a biomarker to gauge the dosage of medication and the efficacy of a treatment regimen. This is an especially pressing need given the opioid epidemic which in 2017 claimed 49,068 Americans.

Previous to PainQx, Alejandro founded a data company called Life Science Nation which helped track the investment interests of life science investors across the globe. Previous to LSN Alejandro worked at Abpro where he was a Business Development Executive specializing in the development of recombinant proteins, monoclonal antibodies, and the associated assay development.

Alejandro has 10 years’ experience in business development finance, marketing, and fundraising in the life sciences. At PainQx Alejandro Handles all strategic and partnering opportunities for PainQx.

Mariana Matus, PhD
CEO and Cofounder, Biobot Analytics
“Tracing the Opioid Epidemic by Sewage Analytics”
Dr. Matus leads scientific and technological development. She holds a PhD in Computational and Systems Biology from MIT, and her doctoral dissertation explored how to build a smart sewage platform to collect public health data with sub-city level resolution.  
MIT researchers Dr. Mariana Matus and Newsha Ghaeli founded Biobot Analytics to bring wastewater epidemiology to cities. Sewage is a rich anonymous source of human health information. Biobot analyzes opioid metabolites in sewage to estimate consumption trends in communities.  
Biobot is building a new metric to assess the opioid epidemic near real-time with data that is anonymous, representative, and non-regulated. With this information, public health officials can customize their strategy to curb the epidemic.

Fees -  (Light dinner included)
Fee Category Early Registration
(By Sept 26)
Week Prior
(Sept 26-Oct 3)

At the Door
(Oct 3
Member/Alliance Partner: $30 $35 $45
Non-Member: $45 $55 $65
Student Member $10 $12 $15    
Student Non-member w/ a valid ID $15 $18 $20 
Gold Member No Charge No Charge  No Charge 
Event Sponsor - $500 -  (contact Hank Allard for details -


About MDG
The Medical Development Group (MDG) is a community of individuals professionally committed to the Medical Device and other Medical Technology Industry segments united by the belief that innovation and advances in technology lead to substantial improvements in health care. MDG pursues this mission through the organization of educational programs and forums: the facilitation of cross-disciplinary dialogue and collaboration; the creation of venues for networking and information sharing for current and aspiring professionals, clinicians, and entrepreneurs; and the development of alliances with complementary organizations.

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