Startup TinyKicks Gets a Boost

June 29, 2015 -- TinyKicks, a startup company spun out from technology developed in the lab of biomedical engineering professor Michelle Khine, was selected as a winner in the Scorpion Pit business competition.

Scorpion Pit, modeled after television show “Shark Tank,” offers early-stage funding for life science technology companies. Sponsored by Arizona-based nonprofit BioAccel, the competition offers up to $100,000 in proof-of-concept dollars.

TinyKicks is developing a wearable health-monitoring wireless smart sensor, called the eMotion™ Fetal Activity Monitor, that continuously captures fetal movement during the third trimester and uses data analytics to predict and guide healthy pregnancy outcomes. The only California company to make it to the final round, TinyKicks will receive a $75,000 seed investment to help it test prototype devices on pregnant women and collect data. The company also will receive mentorship support from BioAccel and the opportunity to re-pitch its ideas to the Scorpions (investors) for subsequent investment dollars.

“We had been developing conformal skin-based electronics in our lab for a while,” says Khine. “Dr. Gareth Forde, an OB-GYN at UCI, asked us if we could help develop some technology to monitor fetal movement last year. It was the perfect marriage of medical need meets technological capabilities.”

TinyKicks also won the People's Choice award at the 16th annual UC Systemwide Bioengineering Symposium Shark Tank competition in Santa Cruz.

-- Lori Brandt

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