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Gravitrex Wins National Institute on Aging Startup Challenge

Gravitrex Wins National Institute on Aging Startup Challenge

PR Newswire

Prestigious NIA award recognizes Gravitrex for its innovative technology to help older adults recover mobility after hospitalization

PHOENIX, Feb. 23, 2024 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- Gravitrex, a rehabilitation technology startup, today announced that it won the National Institute on Aging (NIA) Startup Challenge to advance commercialization of its radically new walking-assist device, that will increase access to walking rehabilitation for older adults after hospitalization or a fall. This prestigious award validates the potential of Gravitrex's innovative technology to significantly impact health outcomes for older adults.

"We are extremely pleased that NIA recognizes the technical merit and potential of Gravitrex's innovative technology to improve equitable health outcomes. The prize will accelerate Gravitrex's mission to expand access to walking rehabilitation for older adults." -Kira Burns, Co-founder & CEO

NIA is a division of The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Startup challenge supports products aimed at improving the health and quality of life for older adults in minority and underserved populations. The prize was awarded after a highly competitive finalist selection process from over 200 submissions. Applications were evaluated by technical reviewers with expertise in aging research, life science entrepreneurship and investment, business development, and product development. NIA selected six winners to each receive a $60,000 cash prize. The winner selection committee included 13 federal judges representing 7 divisions and offices across the NIA, challenge mentors, and the NIA Director.

"We are extremely pleased that NIA recognizes the technical merit and potential of Gravitrex's innovative technology to improve equitable health outcomes," said Kira Burns, Co-founder & CEO of Gravitrex. "The challenge prize provides important financial support and guidance that will accelerate Gravitrex's mission to expand access to walking rehabilitation for older adults."

Over 13 million older adults are hospitalized each year in the U.S., and two-thirds leave the hospital with a new challenge of daily living, like walking. Older adults who become immobile have poorer outcomes, including increased rates of disease, disability, hospitalization, and death[1]. Gravitrex is working to help these older adults recover mobility and maintain independence, allowing them to age-in-place in their homes.

Evidence shows that body-weight supported (BWS) gait training is an effective intervention to improve mobility. However, due to the cost of current devices, they are limited to specialized rehabilitation centers and are available only to a small fraction of the population. Significant barriers to access exist for economically disadvantaged and rural populations. Gravitrex dramatically improves accessibility by leveraging a novel technology to create a BWS device that is both low-cost and highly transportable (unlike current devices). With Gravitrex, such evidence-based intervention can be extended to more communities and used for home-based rehabilitation.

Burns added, "We would like to extend our deepest gratitude to the National Institute on Aging for this award, and for the significant investment in resources committed during the entire Startup Challenge Program. We are confident that NIA's investment in the Startup Challenge will lead to the commercialization of multiple technologies that will positively impact health outcomes for older adults in underserved populations."

About Gravitrex, Inc.

Gravitrex, Inc, a medical device company, will transform how healthcare professionals perform walking rehabilitation to help patients recover mobility after hospitalization or a fall. Gravitrex is leveraging a novel technology to create a radically new walking-assist device that supports part of a person's weight, making walking rehabilitation safer and easier. Gravitrex is headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, and has funding support from the National Institute on Aging, The University of Chicago Polsky Center, and others. To learn more about Gravitrex, visit

[1] 2020, November 30. National Institute on Aging Research Highlights "Maintaining Mobility and Preventing Disability are Key to Living Independently as We Age."

Media Contact

Kira Burns, Gravitrex, 1 5646761264,

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SOURCE Gravitrex

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