At hi-tech Myolyn, UF-trained engineers bridge research, entrepreneurship

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A Gainesville startup company that is developing bicycles to allow paralyzed people to exercise is an example of how the University of Florida can bridge academics, research and entrepreneurship to bring inventions to the public.

Myolyn started as a class project for CEO Alan Hamlet, 28, and Chief Technology Officer Matthew Bellman, 26, as graduate students in mechanical engineering. In 2013, they took an engineering entrepreneurship class and won the class business plan competition.

That summer, they started Myolyn around the plan, based on Bellman’s research in Professor Warren Dixon’s Nonlinear Controls and Robotics lab. Dixon and Bellman patented a method for controlling the intensity and timing of electrical impulses to stimulate muscle movement for a smooth pedaling motion based on the specific characteristics of each user.