Meet Cadence and BaroStitch— Winners of the 2017 Robert Howard Next Step Award

In its sixth year, LUNAR presented select Stanford Biodesign students with the Robert Howard Next Step award in honor of longtime friend and colleague, Robert Howard. The award celebrates those creating outstanding medical technology innovations. LUNAR will provide hands-on design and engineering consulting to the winners to help them bring their product to market. Learn about this year’s winners, Cadence and BaroStitch:


Cadence aims to reduce the rate of unintended pregnancies by improving women’s oral contraceptive pill (OCP) use. Every year, 9 out of 100 women get pregnant on the pill, largely due to their own user error — missing the pill due to stress, forgetting, and schedule disruptions. Cadence provides a system, that is designed to reduce user error and decrease the likelihood of unintended pregnancy. “Our team is excited about the opportunity to work with LUNAR, and grateful to have received this award. Their expertise in design and usability complements our traditional medical device backgrounds nicely, so they will play a vital role in our early development,” said Amanda French, co-founder of Cadence.  The winning team includes: Ann Baum, Amanda French, Janene Fuerch and Craig Nichols.


BaroStitch is a suture-based closure device that induces hemostasis of an arteriotomy following endovascular procedures. It is commonly used for large-bore access to the femoral artery. By closing large-bore arteriotomies in a percutaneous fashion, BaroStitch has the potential to decrease length of stay, and could potentially save hospitals $2,600 per hospital stay day. The Stanford team includes: Chirag Chauhan, Katie Blevins, Eric Kramer and Vivian de Ruijter.

“We are honored to have been selected for the Robert Howard Next Step Award. We look forward to benefitting from the expertise and resources that LUNAR has to offer, and are excited to collaborate and push our device design forward,” said Katie Blevins, co-founder of Barostitch.

We can’t wait to see what Cadence and BaroStitch develop. Congratulations to them both, and to all those that applied.

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