Labyrinth Devices is a medical device company dedicated to developing new technologies for diagnosing and treating people suffering from disorders of the vestibular labyrinth - the inner ear's sensors of head motion and orientation. Failure of vestibular sensors causes chronic imbalance, blurry vision during head motion, unsteady walking, and fatigue due to the constant conscious effort required to do things that are normally automatic.
Founded in 2008 to license and develop new technologies arising from research conducted at the Johns Hopkins Vestibular NeuroEngineering Lab (VNEL), Labyrinth Devices is based in a Baltimore biotech park adjacent to the Johns Hopkins Hospital and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
The Labyrinth Devices mission is to restore balance and clear vision to individuals disabled by vestibular disorders. Through a collaboration with MedEl GmbH, a manufacturer of cochlear implants, we have developed the MVI™ Multichannel Vestibular Implant System, the world's first bionic implant designed to continuously restore vestibular sensation in individuals disabled by inner ear disorders. Much like cochlear implants, the MVI™ includes a stimulator implanted in the inner ear and an external processor that provides power and control signals via a magnetic link across the skin over the implant. The first-in-human clinical trial of the MVI™ system started at Johns Hopkins during the Spring of 2016 and is currently recruiting subject. See the VNEL website for progress updates or to apply to participate in the study.
In addition to the MVI™ system, Labyrinth Devices developed two systems being used in the MVI™ clinical trial: the aHIT™ Automated Head Impulse Test System, which precisely and reliably generates head movements like those needed to test vestibular function, and the 3DBinoc™ video-oculography system, which simultaneously measures eye movement responses of both eyes in 3D. Although only available now as research tools, both fill important gaps in the set of diagnostic tools available to doctors who treat people suffering from vertigo or loss of balance due to vestibular disorders.