September 2018

TEDxMarin Innovator Showcase 2018


On Saturday, September 15th, members of the Board of Directors and staff of Napa Medical Research Foundation (NMRF) joined fellow non-profits, start-ups, and other innovative companies for the 9th annual TEDxMarin Gala and Filming. Exploring The Bigger Picture: Staying Human in a Digital Age, guest speakers from a broad spectrum of disciplines and backgrounds answered compelling questions, including “What oncoming innovations promise to rewrite what’s possible in health, energy and economy?” and “Will these innovations finally support a better, more balanced life for us and our children?”


The TEDxMarin event offered NMRF an opportunity to present their new visually engaging, informational video – which will soon be available for general viewing on our website. Dr. Marko Bodor, Director of Research; Ryan Dregalla, Cell and Molecular Biologist; Joann Serafini Ross, Board member; Meagan Ryan Stasz, Development Director and Michelle Voss, Community Relations Manager were available to answer questions, network with other organizations, and introduce our leading edge research to a broad and diverse public audience.

How Non-Profits Are Changing the Medical Research Landscape

The role of non-profit foundations in the area of medical research is becoming increasingly more significant. Flexible, independent, driven by patients’ needs, funded by individual donors, and operating with a fully functional research pipeline, the non-profit medical foundation presents an entirely unique experience when compared to the traditional model of medical research and development.


While still only representing a small fraction of total funding (approx. $3.3 billion according to the US Foundations Key Facts report), this private sector support is proving indispensable for the translation of research results into effective treatments.


Independent of an institutional agenda, non-profit research organizations enjoy greater flexibility, can transition the course of their research to ensure greatest relevance, and are positioned to react more readily to patient input. With an emphasis on accelerating treatments and cures for a specific area of interest, charitable funding organizations help to deliver innovations that are directly related to patients’ needs.


Central to the success of a non-profit foundation is their donor base. Donors to non-profit research organizations often have a higher stake in the outcomes, usually through personal experience or family association, and have greater empathy for the real lives being affected by their financial participation. They understand and are more tolerant with the risks because they know any benefit will be highly relevant and more immediately accessible.

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A Tale of Two Knees

This is the story of one woman, two knees, and two very different treatment plans.

Back in 2013, a 72-year old woman began experiencing limited range of motion and pain in her left knee and went to see her orthopedic surgeon. Having spent most of her life skiing, playing tennis, running and hiking, it came as little surprise that her diagnosis included osteoarthritis and a torn meniscus, among other conditions. The recommended treatment plan: A complete knee replacement, which she ended up having at Stanford.


A few years later, the same woman began to experience similar symptoms in her right knee and went to see the same surgeon. The recommendation was also the same: a complete knee replacement.


This time however, rather than following the same course of action, she decided to consult with Marko Bodor, MD. Dr. Bodor told her that perhaps her torn meniscus was the main cause of her pain and if that was the case, there was a good chance that a biologic treatment might be effective instead of surgery. In Dr. Bodor’s experience, platelets, which adhere to and pull together collagen tears, have been surprisingly efficient at making symptomatic meniscus tears asymptomatic. How this works exactly is not known, but likely involves healing of tears in the outer third of the meniscus. Using ultrasound visualization to find the tear, he injected concentrated platelets into the tear and activated them with calcium chloride to ensure that they clot more rapidly in the presence of joint fluid, which could prevent adhesion.

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It is our pleasure to relate the testimony of patients and their families who have experienced positive outcomes and are enjoying an improved quality of life.



OLIVER S:  Regenerative medicine is the future and I’m living proof that these non-invasive therapies are worth pursuing. The research being conducted by Dr. Bodor and the NMRF has the potential to change modern medicine, eliminate certain risks and improve short and long term outcomes.

STACY E: Prior to the Sever;’s Disease Study, my 11-year old son could barely walk and was in constant pain. The doctors had put one foot in a cast; the other in an ortho boot. After 2 weeks of Dr. Bodor’s regimen,he was cast-free and pain-free.

ELIZABETH S:  Dr. Marko Bodor is absolutely unique. His innovation is powerful and challenges us to earn back our health. It’s a healing process, not a quick fix.


  • Cervical Facet Injection Study is complete. Working with musculoskeletal radiologist Naveen Murthy at Mayo Clinic as co-author, the NMRF research team will present the paper for publication in early 2019.
  • Lateral Femoral Cutaneous Nerve Study has been approved by an Institutional Review Board. There are currently 6 patients enrolled, with a total goal of 20 participants, to ensure the sufficient reporting of outcomes.
  • Intrasdical PRP Study is currently tracking patients at 3 months and 1 year. As of 8/13/18, 267 patients, with a total of 631 degenerative discs in the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine, have been given treatment comprising platelet-rich plasma injections.
  • The NMRF research team is characterizing the role of platelets, white blood cells and mesenchymal stem cells in the treatment of damaged intervertebral discs using an extracellular matrix of porcine material. Early results exhibit an accelerated rate of cell proliferation with decreased levels of white blood cells and establish the co-localization of mesenchymal stem cells.

The Hip Labrum Tear and Impingement Studies are following the scans, and follow up data collection of 54 ultra-marathon runners who participated in the 100-mile Western States Endurance Race. Additional DXA bone density scanning will serve to expand the scope of the research, and deliver potentially more significant outcomes in the coming year.


In collaboration with colleagues from Mayo Clinic, assessments are being tracked on over 40 individuals who have received ultrasound-guided carpal tunnel release surgery using the Sonex device. Outcomes are being tracked at 2 weeks, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year post-procedure.

Improving ACL Treatment

ACL Technique Validation Study We asked Dr. Tracy Høeg about the ACL Technique Validation Study to find out what's going on, why this is so important and what she's most excited about! Pictured: Tracy Høeg, MD, PhD   What is the purpose of the ACL Technique...

Carpal Tunnel Release Provides Relief

50+ Successful Carpal Tunnel Releases In February 2017, Dr. Bodor completed his first ultrasound guided micro-invasive carpal tunnel release. Now he's completed over 50 successful procedures and says, "The patient experience has been great." According to Dr. Bodor,...

Teaming Up with UC Davis for Kids

Oliver Starr has been featured as one of our success stories. Here's how his recovery could help kids with ACL injuries. Extreme Athlete, Extreme recoveryIn March 2018, Oliver's MRI showed his ACL as "nearly normal" after receiving BMAC injections from Dr. Bodor,...

A Letter From Our Founder

As we approach the fifth anniversary of establishing the Napa Medical Research Foundation, we realize how far we have advanced regenerative orthopedics in a short period of time, and we would like to take this opportunity to reflect on how it all got started.  I was...

Winter 2019 Newsletter

A message from our founder Michael and Pepper Jackson with Dr Marko Bodor and his wife, Jackie. As we approach the fifth anniversary of establishing the Napa Medical Research Foundation, we realize how far we have advanced regenerative orthopedics in a short period of...

The Latest News, November 2018

WELCOME GRETCHEN DE BAUBIGNY The NMRF Board of Directors and Staff welcome Gretchen De Baubigny, a resident of St. Helena and San Francisco broadly respected for her creativity, warmth, and lifelong belief in the power of philanthropy. She is an advocate for issues...

The Latest News, September 2018

TEDxMarin Innovator Showcase 2018   On Saturday, September 15th, members of the Board of Directors and staff of Napa Medical Research Foundation (NMRF) joined fellow non-profits, start-ups, and other innovative companies for the 9th annual TEDxMarin...

The Latest News JULY 2018

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: A new, online resource The leading edge research being conducted by the NMRF naturally invites questions. We have been listening to our friends and neighbors around the Napa Valley and are pleased to provide a place where people can better...

The Latest News: MAY 2018

DINNER UNDER THE STARS We are grateful to NMRF Board of Director, Con Hewitt and his wife Linda for their wonderful generosity and hospitality! On Thursday, May 17th, the couple hosted a special fundraiser dinner to support the important work of Dr. Marko Bodor and...


Greetings from the Napa Medical Research Foundation! In our bi-monthly publication, we share the latest news form the field, recent findings from our clinical studies, and stories about the people who support, and benefit from, our mission to advance regenerative...


 Reduce Pain. Increase Mobility + Function. Improve Quality of Life.

All the research conducted through the Napa Medical Research Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is fully funded through generous donations received from individuals and family foundations.

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