ONWARD Medical technology enables walking and standing after severe spinal cord injury


Results of the STIMO-BRIDGE study published in Nature Medicine


ONWARD Medical NV (Euronext: ONWD), the medical technology company that creates innovative therapies to restore movement, independence and health to people with spinal cord injuries, today announces the publication of the results of the STIMO study -BRIDGE in Nature Medicine. The study highlights the use of ONWARD’s technology to enable people with the most severe forms of spinal cord injury to walk, stand, cycle and swim again.

The STIMO-BRIDGE study was conducted by NeuroRestore, a collaboration between the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) and the Center Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV), co-directed by Professor Grégoire Courtine, PhD and Neurosurgeon Jocelyne Bloch , MD. was published today in NATURE Medicine, titled “Activity-dependent spinal cord neuromodulation rapidly restores trunk and leg motor function after complete paralysis.”

The study relied on an innovative track developed by ONWARD to specifically target areas of the spinal cord involved in leg and lower trunk movement with the aim of facilitating faster and more efficient recovery of motor function. . To design this lead, ONWARD and NeuroRestore used advanced computer models and a spinal cord atlas to determine optimal electrode placement and guide optimal position during surgery. The preoperative planning and intraoperative neuromonitoring models were developed within the framework of the RESTORE and CONFIRM Eurostar projects, in collaboration with the Medical Imaging Center of the University of Utrecht, the IT’IS Foundation, ZMT Zurich MedTech AG and the Faculty of Medicine of Heidelberg University.

Three participants with complete sensorimotor spinal cord injury (AIS-A) were implanted with this new lead. Prior to implantation, these subjects could neither contract their leg muscles nor take a single step. On the first day after implantation, all participants were able to independently step on a treadmill with body weight support.

After 5 months of rehabilitation, participants were able to use their legs to stand, walk, swim and/or ride a bike. They also regained control of their core muscles. This recovery of leg and trunk motor function also allowed participants to stand independently in community settings. This EPFL video describes the study and the benefits that participants receive.

“Using ONWARD technology, Professor Courtine and his colleagues have made a remarkable breakthrough in restoring the ability to stand and walk, even in people with the most severe spinal injuries,” said Dave Marver, CEO of ONWARD. “We are working hard to bring these therapies to the SCI community as soon as possible and our first introduction, for restoration of hand and arm function, is expected in early 2023.”

To learn more about ONWARD’s ARC Therapy and the company’s vision to restore movement, independence and health to people with spinal cord injuries, please visit ONWD.com.


ONWARD is a medical technology company that creates innovative therapies to restore movement, independence and health to people with spinal cord injuries. ONWARD’s work is based on more than a decade of basic and preclinical scientific research conducted in leading neuroscience laboratories around the world. ONWARD’s ARC Therapy, which can be delivered via implantable (ARCI AM) or external (ARCEX), is designed to provide targeted, programmed stimulation of the spinal cord to restore movement and other functions in people with spinal cord injuries, thereby improving their quality of life. ONWARD has received three breakthrough device designations from the FDA encompassing both ARCI AM and CRAEX. The company’s first pivotal FDA trial, called Up-LIFT, was completed in December 2021 with 65 subjects worldwide. ONWARD technology is protected by more than 310 patents issued or pending worldwide.

ONWARD is headquartered at the High Tech Campus in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. It maintains a large team in Lausanne, Switzerland, and has a growing US presence in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. For more information about the company, please visit ONWD.com. To access our 2022 financial calendar, please visit IR.ONWD.com.


Certain statements, beliefs and opinions contained in this press release are forward-looking and reflect the current expectations and projections of the Company or, if applicable, the directors of the Company regarding future events. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties and assumptions could adversely affect the outcome and financial effects of the plans and events described herein. A multitude of factors, including but not limited to changes in demand, competition and technology, may cause actual events, performance or results to differ materially from any anticipated development. Forward-looking statements contained in this press release regarding past trends or activities should not be taken as a representation that such trends or activities will continue in the future. Accordingly, the Company expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained in this press release as a result of any change in expectations or any change in events, conditions, assumptions or circumstances on which these forward-looking statements are based. Neither the Company, nor its advisers or representatives, nor any of its subsidiaries or the officers or employees of such persons warrant that the assumptions underlying these forward-looking statements are free from error and accept no responsibility for the future accuracy of forward-looking statements. statements contained in this press release or the actual occurrence of anticipated developments. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release.

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