Medtech Brings in Life Sciences Venture Dollars

by: The Burrill Report

By Marie Daghlian
A couple of medical device companies closed significant financing rounds during a week when many members of the biotech community were wheeling and dealing in Chicago at the annual BIO International Convention. Atlanta-based CardioMEMS completed a $37.9 million financing that came from Arcapita Ventures and other existing investors. CardioMems is a digital health company developing wireless patient monitoring technology. The company will use the capital to complete its 550 patient CHAMPION clinical trial evaluating the safety and effectiveness of its heart failure pressure measurement system. Results are expected this summer.

CardioMEMS’ miniature sensor device is implanted in the patient’s pulmonary artery in a catheter-based procedure. The pulmonary artery pressure is then measured and displayed using an electronic monitoring system. The procedure allows patients to perform wireless measurements of their pulmonary artery pressure from home. Data is transmitted to a secure database and is available for review by the implanting physician on the CardioMEMS proprietary website.

North Carolina-based TearScience completed a $44.5 million series C financing from new investors Essex Woodlands Health Ventures, Investor Growth Capital and General Catalyst. Existing investors De Novo Ventures, Spray Ventures and Quaker Bio Ventures also participated in the round. TearScience will use the funding to commercialize its devices designed for use by eye care professionals to diagnose and treat the most common form of chronic dry eye disease.

More than 100 million people worldwide suffer from dry eye syndrome, more than 70 percent of which suffer from evaporative dry eye. Treatments for dry eye conditions represent a global market of more than $2 billion in sales, which is growing more than 10 percent annually. Dry eye experts believe that effective treatment needs to address deficiencies of the protective oily lipid layer of natural tears. TearScience’s devices are designed to help eye doctors effectively monitor and improve the essential lipid layer of the tear film, important for addressing deficiencies of the protective oily lipid layer of nature tears.

TearScience has already gotten approval to market its devices in Europe and is currently seeking U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance. The company anticipates its products to be commercially available within the next 12 months.

While several Sanofi-Aventis (NYSE:SNY) executives were looking for innovation at the BIO International Convention, the company struck a licensing deal with Indian generic pharmaceutical Glenmark for rights to develop and market two of its molecules in development for chronic pain. One of the molecules, GRC 15300, is in early stage human trials and is being developed as a potential treatment for diabetic neuropathic pain and osteoarthritic pain.

The announcement of the deal sent shares of Glenmark to a 52-week high and renewed interest in a company that has been a leader in new drug development in the country. Glenmark will get $20 million upfront and up to $325 million in additional payments based on development, regulatory and sales milestones. The company may also be eligible for double digit royalties, according to a statement released by Glenmark.

Under the terms of their agreement, Sanofi will have exclusive marketing rights in North America, Europe and Japan. Glenmark has the right to co-promote the products in the United States and five Eastern European nations. Sanofi-Aventis will have co-marketing rights in Brazil, Russia, China and seven other countries, while Glenmark will retain exclusive rights to India and the rest of the world.

Finally, Merck (NYSE:MRK) restructured its July 2007 collaboration with Ariad Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ARIA), opting to take full control of Ariad’s investigational mTOR inhibitor ridaforolimus in late-stage development for the treatment of soft-tissue and bone sarcomas. Under the terms of the new agreement, Merck will pay Ariad $50 million upfront, $19 million to cover expenses incurred since the beginning of 2010, and up to $514 million in developmental, regulatory, and sales milestones [see story].

Deals for the Week Ending May 7, 2010

Global Venture Financings
Company Location Amount Raised ($M)
Principal Focus
Immunovo s-Hertogen-bosch, Netherlands n/a Cancer therapeutics
Oncos Therapeutics Helsinki, Finland $5.30 Cancer therapeutics
Redwood Bioscience Burlingame, CA n/a Proteomics
Nanobiotix Paris, France $11.00 Cancer therapeutics
Curexo Technology Freemont, CA $13.20 Robotics
Inspired Technologies North Huntington, PA $2.80 Respiratory medical devices
BiO2 Medical San Antonio, TX $7.50 Respiratory medical devices
Biomoda Albuquerque, NM $2.00 Cancer diagnostics
CardioMEMS Atlanta, GA $37.90 Wireless sensing
AppDynamics San Francisco, CA $11.00 Production troubleshooting
InTouch Health Santa Barbara, CA $10.00 Telemedicine
TearScience Morrisville, NC $44.50 Ophthalmic medical devices
KiOR Pasadena, TX $39.99 Biomass conversion
Link Medicine Cambridge, MA $20.00 Neurology rherapeutics
Grants and Contracts
Funding/Contracting Agency
Amount ($M)
Principal Focus
BioMarker Strategies NIH SBIR $1.00 Cancer diagnostics
Innate Pharma (New Zealand) Fast Forward n/a Musculoskeletal
MitoStem NIH SBIR $0.20 Gene/cell therapy
Codexis US DOE ARPA-E $4.70 Biocatalysts
GlycoVaxyn (Switzerland) NIH $3.40 Vaccines
Crucell United Nations UNICEF contract $110.00 Pediatric vaccines
Total Grants and Contracts $119.30
Raised $M

Financing Type
Medivir (Sweden) SSE:MVIR $41.70 PIPE
BSD Medical BSDM $2.50 PIPE--RDO
ADVENTRX Pharmaceuticals ANX $19.20 PIPE--RDO
Pro-Pharmaceuticals OTC:PRWP $0.31 PIPE
International Stem Cell OTCQB:ISCO $13.50 PIPE
Oxygen Biotherapeutics OXBT $5.00 PIPE--RDO
Arch Biopartners (Canada) CNSX:ACH $0.70 PIPE
ImmunoGen IMGN $67.00 Follow-on
PhotoMedex PHMD $3.00 Follow-on
Stratech (Singapore) Private $3.00 Debt
Mylan MYL $1,000.00 Debt
Alexza Pharmaceuticals ALXA $15.00 Loan
MagForce Nanotechnologies Private $25.50 SEDA
Ex-US $45.40
Deal Value
in $M

Althea Technologies Altus Pharmaceuticals (ALTU)
n/a Protein technology
Vilmorin (France) Arcadia Biosciences n/a Agbio
Arcadia Biosciences Limagrain Cereal Seeds n/a Agbio
Valeant Pharmaceuticals Aton Pharma $318.00 Ophthalmology
Merck Ariad Pharmaceuticals $583.00 Cancer
Intercell (Austria) Cytos Biotechnology (Germany) $19.15 Infectious
Endo Pharmaceuticals HealthTronics $223.00 Urology
Thomas H Lee Partners InVentiv Health $1,100.00 Supply/service
Vascular Solutions Escalon Medical $5.75 Medical devices
Landec Lifecore Biomedical $54.00 Biomaterials
Stago Group Trinity Biotech (Ireland) $90.00 Coagulation POC
C.R. Bard SenoRx $213.00 Medical devices
Company/Licensee Company/Licenser Deal Value
in $M
AstraZeneca (NASDAQ:UK) Targacept n/a Neurology collaboration
Santen Pharmaceutical (Japan) Clinical Data n/a Ophthalmic license
Sanofi-Aventis (France) Glenmark Pharmaceuticals (India) $345.00 Pain therapeutic license
Stason Pharmaceuticals Peregrine Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:PPHM)
n/a Oncology drug license
Eisai (Japan) BioSeek (Asterand-UK) n/a Oncology collaboration
Global Alliance for TB Drug Development AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) (UK) n/a Tuberculosis collaboration
SIOGEN Biotech (Malaysia) Veeda Clinical Research (India) n/a Cancer drug delivery partnership
Actavis (Iceland) Sagent Pharmaceuticals n/a Specialty injectables collaboration
ACGT (Genting-Malaysia) Chromatin n/a Agbio partnership
Boehringer Ingelheim (Germany) Micromet $72.60 Oncology collaboration
Onyx Pharmaceuticals S*Bio (Singapore) $20.00 Oncology collaboration
RedHill Biopharma (Israel) SCOLR Pharma $30.00 Cancer side effect license
Meda (Sweden) Adeona Pharmaceuticals $17.50 Fibromyalgia corporate partnership
Vilmorin (France) Arcadia Biosciences n/a Agbio joint venture
Warnex Medical Laboratories (Canada) Epigenomics (Germany) n/a Companion diagnostics license

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