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Menlo Park, Calif.
If you're an entrepreneur who dreams more about saving lives than creating the next Google, you might want to head to Menlo Park.

The city is home to The Foundry, a business incubator that helps universities, researchers and inventors turn ideas for medical devices into successful companies.

The Foundry guides start-ups from the seed stage through IPO by offering business development advice, fund-raising assistance, market analysis, management training, work space and other resources.

Since it opened in 1988, The Foundry has helped launch a dozen companies -- together valued at over $1 billion and responsible for creating more than 350 jobs. Foundry companies include Concentric Medical, which makes devices to treat strokes, and Satiety, the manufacturer of an obesity treatment designed as an alternative to gastric bypass surgery. The Foundry also licenses its own intellectual property on patented technologies that haven't led to new companies.

An added bonus: Foundry companies get the advantage of being close to Silicon Valley talent and a bevy of venture capital firms on Sand Hill Road.

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Last updated November 23 2010: 1:41 PM ET
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