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State’s Medical Device Industry Presents Latest Innovations to Investors and Venture Capitalists

Revolutionary Treatments for Severe Emphysema, Gum Disease and Various Forms of Cancer Featured at 11th Annual MedTech Investors Conference; Boston Healthcare Associates’  Charles Matthews Provides Update on Health Care Reform

Boston, Mass. (October 2, 2009) – Representatives from the region’s emerging medical device companies convened today to present their cutting-edge technologies to venture capitalists and medical device business leaders gathered at UMass Boston.  At the 11th Annual MassMEDIC MedTech Investors Conference, 25 pre-venture, start-up firms had 10 minutes each to present their medical innovations to the group in the hopes of convincing them to help fund their devices.

Among the range of new devices showcased was an adhesive foam used to perform Lung Volume Reduction in a safer, less-invasive way for the treatment of severe emphysema; a unique, injectable hydrogel for nucleus pulposus replacement in the intervertebral disc to restore function and relieve back pain; and a method used for the prevention and regeneration of thinning gum tissues without grafting.

The conference also featured an update on health care reform by Charles Matthews, director of Boston Healthcare Associates, and panel discussions on regional differences in innovation, and resources for regional entrepreneurs.

Massachusettsis home to the nation’s second largest concentration of medical device manufacturing and development, with more than 225 manufacturers, 50,000 employees in manufacturing, development and related industries, annual shipments of $5.5 billion, and exports totaling $2.4 billion.

“It is encouraging and exciting to see that, despite the economic downturn of the past couple years, medical device innovation is still thriving and Massachusetts continues to lead the pack,” said Tom Sommer, President of MassMEDIC. “This is a reliable indication that the medical device sector in the state that provides thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in economic activity to the Commonwealth is continuing to develop new technologies and approached to health care delivery.”

Some of the technologies presented at the event included:

  • An adhesive foam designed to treat severe emphysema: The AeriSeal System, delivered using a bronchoscope for Lung Volume Reduction, provides the clinical benefits of Lung Volume Reduction Surgery (LVRS) without the associated morbidity and mortality; developed by Aeris Therapeutics of Woburn,Mass.
  • An injectable, biocompatible hydrogel to treat back pain: Hydrospine’s hydrogel provides augmentation or replacement of the nucleus pulposus in the intervertebral disc of the spine, which allows restoration of biomechanical function in discs subjected to trauma or age-related degeneration; developed by Hydrospine Inc. of Boston,Mass.
  • A minimally invasive laser-based treatment for gum disease: Laser Patterned Thermolysis™ was developed for the prevention and regeneration of receding or thinning gum tissues that does not require anesthesia, is blood-free and can be performed by a specialist or general dentist; developed by Dental Photonics Inc. of Norwood, Mass.
  • Technology that determines why a patient’s immune system is not eliminating a tumor: Computational models use parameters measured from blood and tumor samples to determine why a tumor is not being eliminated and which patients will respond to specific therapies for metastatic melanoma and kidney cancer; developed by Immuneering Corporation in Boston, Mass.
  • An implantable device that can serve as an early-warning system for cardiac health: The SendSor device is a wireless, implantable cardiac pressure monitor that captures data that can serve as a diagnostic and early-warning system for cardiac health, and may help in the detection of a potential heart attack before it occurs; developed by SendSor Corporation in Medway, Mass.
  • An injectable hydrogel that separates organs at risk from tumor targets: The SpaceOAR™ System is used during radiotherapy for prostate cancer, greatly reducing current dose limiting morbidity in adjacent normal tissue; developed by Augmenix in Waltham, Mass.
  • A device enabling local sustained delivery of a drug directly to target tissue: Through drug-device convergence, the technology will be initially used to treat bladder diseases, which are difficult to treat with systemic therapies and affect over 50 million people in the U.S. alone; developed by TARIS Biomedical in Lexington, Mass.

The following companies and organizations presented their technologies and business plans at the conference:

Aeris Therapeutics (Woburn, MA)

Allegro Diagnostics (Boston, MA)     

Ankota (Wellesley, MA)

Aponos Medical (Kingston,NH)

Augmenix (Waltham, MA)

Biorasis (Storrs,CT)

Dental Photonics (Norwood, MA)

Facet Solutions (Hopkinton, MA)

GlycoZym USA (Beverly, MA)

Hydrospine (Boston,MA)

I-Denti-Fied (Crown Point, IN)

Immuneering  (Boston, MA)

LighTouch Medical (Bryn Athyn,PA)

Navis Medical (Cleveland, Ohio)         

OmniMedics (Melrose,MA

Optasia Medical (Sudbury, MA)

Prochon Biotech (Woburn, MA)

Profound Medical (Toronto, ON)

RBCyte (Walpole,MA)

Robopsy (Cambridge, MA)      

SendSor (Medway,MA)

Taris Biomedical (Lexington, MA)

CVP (Boston, MA)

Wadsworth Medical

Zoiray Technologies (Boston,MA)