Neurotechnology Ventures

[Class Content]   [Fall 2014]  [Fall 2013]  [Fall 2012]  [Fall 2011]  [Fall 2010]  [Fall 2008]  [Spring 2007]  

MIT Course Numbers: 9.455 ~ 15.128 ~ 20.454 ~ HST.588 ~ MAS.883
Instructors: J. Bonsen ~ E.S. Boyden ~ R.G. Ellis-Behnke
Units: H-level ~ 2-0-7 Units
Time: Tuesdays, 8-10pm (7-9pm starting 9/29)
Place: Room 46-3189 (Room E15-209, Wiesner Room of Media Lab, starting 9/29)
Special note: Class sessions will be live webcasted and videorecorded for Youtube, starting 2010
Also, after each class, there will be networking


Neurotechnology Ventures is a seminar and project-oriented course on the challenges of envisioning, planning, and building startups to bring neuroengineering innovations to the world. A typical 2-hour class begins with either a survey of a broad topic area, or a live-case study of a current, specific, development or commercialization effort in that area, followed by a class exercise or resource learning event. Explorations will cover a broad array of issues ranging from the deeply technical, to the analysis of market realities. Topics Include: Neuroimaging, Neurology/Psychiatry Diagnosis, Rehabilitation, Neurosurgery, Neuropharmacology, Brain Stimulation, Prosthetics, Sensory and Motor Augmentation, Regenerative Neuromedicine, and more.

Limited Enrollment - Email two paragraphs summarizing your: (1) Professional Skills & Experience, and (2) Inventive/Entrepreneurial Aspirations, on or before first class day.

Student Project - Students will work in teams to analyze an opportunity and create an elevator pitch, a 6-slide company plan, and a business plan executive summary and final presentation aimed at solving a major problem through neurotechnology. The project will develop throughout the term, with multiple reviews, and culminating in a final presentation. We expect that some projects may go on to become successful ventures.

Special note: Class sessions will be live webcasted here at (to chat and ask questions in the moderated forum, you must FIRST add user 'neuroven' as a friend to your account by clicking here, and THEN email your username so that we can approve you for chatting privileges). Lectures will also be recorded for posting to Youtube (there will be "off-the record" portions at beginning and end of each class), starting 2010.

Special note: After each class, there will be a social networking event, likely at the Muddy Charles Pub in Walker Memorial, or in the lobby of Building 46.


Tues., Sept. 15 Lecturers: Overview of class, introductions.

GUEST SPEAKER: Dr. Dan DiLorenzo, NeuroVista, Neurosurgeon

TITLE: Neuroengineering & NeuroVentures:
1. Past, Present and Future of Neuroengineering, and
2. A War Story behind launching a venture to treat Epilepsy

Tues., Sept. 22 GUEST CLINICIAN PANEL: Dr. Carl Marci, Dr. Emad Eskandar, Dr. Darin Dougherty, Dr. Elizabeth Lawson, Dr. Steven Schachter

Instructor 1-minute IdeaPitches.


Tues., Sept. 29
Note: on this day the class shifts to 7-9PM, and also moves to room E15-209.
1-minute ideapitches by all participants (first group).

Tues., Oct. 6 GUEST SPEAKER: Steve Kelly, CEO, Myomo, "Myomo NeuroRobotics from concept to company; robotic stroke rehabilitation"

1-minute IdeaPitches by all participants (second group).

Tues., Oct. 13, 20 No class (holiday and SFN).

NOTE: Instructors will provide feedback on the 1-minute IdeaPitches during this period.

NOTE: Oct. 27-29 is the MIT $100k Competition Elevator Pitch Contest.

Tues., Oct. 27 6-slide presentations, all teams.

Tues., Nov. 3 Ed Boyden, "How to Think About Ventures."

NOTE: Instructors will provide feedback on Part I of the 6-slie presentations during this period.

Tues., Nov. 10 Investment panel. Dr. Jonathan Behr (Puretech), Dr. Mikhail Shapiro (Third Rock), Ann DeWitt (Flagship).

Open Mic for most-improved 6 slide pitches in front of VC's.

Tues., Nov. 17 GUEST SPEAKER: Philip Low, Neurovigil, "An Inexpensive Brainscan: From the Bench, to the Boardroom to the Clinic."

OPTIONAL: 2-page executive summary may be submitted by this day to get a critique.

Tues., Nov. 24 GUEST SPEAKER: Michael Scanlon, Lumosity, "Software for cognition: from lab to mass market and back again, the path of a first-time entrepreneur"

Tues., Dec. 1 GUEST SPEAKER: Dr. Jamie Tyler, Synsonix


NOTE: Dec. 3 is the MIT $100k Competition Executive Summary Contest.

Tues., Dec. 8 Final presentations by each team. Final (graded) 2-page executive summaries due today too.