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GE Healthcare Strengthens Strategic Alliance with Veran Medical Technologies Image-Guided Medical Device Company


9/15/2011 8:44:02 AM

GE Healthcare, the $17 billion healthcare unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), and Veran Medical Technologies, Inc., a privately-held medical device company, announced today that the companies have entered into a strategic alliance to advance and co-develop navigation technologies for interventional procedures to improve the care and management of cancer patients. Building on the alliance, the GE Healthymagination Fund, an equity fund that makes investments in highly promising healthcare technology companies, is investing in Veran. The financial terms were undisclosed.

The alliance between the two companies reflects GE’s healthymagination initiative, which focuses on reducing cost, increasing access and improving quality in healthcare.

Veran manufactures the ig4 navigation system which integrates multi-modality information at the point of patient care in the interventional suite and combines that information with electromagnetic tracking of instruments with imbedded sensors. The ig4 system aims to provide interventional clinicians with the best information at the point when they need it most, when they are steering an instrument inside the human body to perform an oncologic intervention such as cancer biopsy and ablation.

GE Healthcare is a provider of comprehensive X-ray imaging solutions that give clinicians the tools they need to take image-based diagnosis and minimally invasive therapy to a new level. The strategic alliance between the two businesses combined with expanded capabilities in product research and development will accelerate the development of innovative high-value integrated technologies for the diagnosis and care of patients suspected of cancer.

Earlier this year, GE Healthcare became the exclusive distributor and reseller of Veran’s ig4 Navigation system in the United States. The ig4 navigation system is compatible with GE’s Innova* imaging systems, which acquire CT-like patient images of the target organ(s) that can be exported to the navigation system in the same imaging suite, during the same interventional procedure. The resulting displayed image provides navigation information to help physicians insert biopsy needles, ablation (RF, cryotherapy, and microwave) probes and other devices through the skin more quickly.

Hooman Hakami, President and CEO of GE Healthcare’s Interventional Systems business, said,“Our mission is to develop solutions that enable patients to lead longer and fuller lives. Veran is a strong strategic fit with this mission, given our common focus on improving quality care by enabling minimally invasive procedures. We have been extremely impressed with Veran’s innovations in navigation technologies, and we see great potential to advance patient care. The ability to combine GE imaging capabilities with Veran navigation technology provides us the opportunity to further our leadership position in Interventional Oncology by improving workflow and reducing radiation dose.”

Jerome Edwards, Veran’s Founder, President and CEO, said,“We are very excited to be working with GE Healthcare to expand the opportunities for minimally invasive procedures within the interventional suite. GE Healthcare is a leader in providing excellent image quality at a low dose. By bringing together their imaging and our navigation system, we can enhance quality of care while also helping to speed procedures and improve access to care. Now, this alliance and financial support will better enable us to develop new technologies designed to address the ongoing need within the IR community.”

The Healthymagination Fund is part of GE’s $6 billion healthymagination initiative, a global commitment to deliver better healthcare to more people at lower cost. The $250 million Healthymagination Fund targets three broad areas for investment:

- Broad-based Diagnostics, including imaging, home health, patient monitoring, molecular diagnostics, pathology, novel imaging agents and other technologies for disease diagnosis.

- Healthcare Information Technology, including electronic medical records, clinical information systems, healthcare information exchanges and value-added data services.

- Life Sciences, including tools for research and development in biopharmaceuticals and stem cells, and technologies for manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals and vaccines.

The fund draws on capabilities from across GE Healthcare, GE Capital and GE Global Research, and has a global footprint. For further information about the fund, visit healthymaginationfund.com/.

About GE Healthcare

GE Healthcare (gehealthcare.com) provides transformational medical technologies and services that are shaping a new age of patient care. Our broad expertise in medical imaging and information technologies, medical diagnostics, patient monitoring systems, drug discovery, biopharmaceutical manufacturing technologies, performance improvement and performance solutions services help our customers to deliver better care to more people around the world at a lower cost. In addition, we partner with healthcare leaders, striving to leverage the global policy change necessary to implement a successful shift to sustainable healthcare systems.

Our “healthymagination” vision for the future invites the world to join us on our journey as we continuously develop innovations focused on reducing costs, increasing access and improving quality and efficiency around the world. Headquartered in the United Kingdom, GE Healthcare is a $16 billion unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE). Worldwide, GE Healthcare employs more than 46,000 people committed to serving healthcare professionals and their patients in more than 100 countries. For our latest news, please visit newsroom.gehealthcare.com/.

About GE Capital, Equity

GE Capital (gecapital.com), Equity is GE's private equity investment group, investing in growth companies, buyouts and special situations. Visit geequity.com.

GE Capital offers consumers and businesses around the globe an array of financial products and services. Follow company news via Twitter (@GECapital).

About Veran Medical Technologies, Inc.

Veran Medical Technologies (veranmedical.com) is a privately held medical device company focused on developing products in the field of image guided surgery. The company has assembled a technology platform fortified by a significant intellectual property portfolio. The technology platform enables Veran to develop products that enable minimally invasive therapies. The company’s mission is to integrate information and devices at the point of patient care to enable clinicians to perform therapies in the most informed, efficient, efficacious and minimally invasive manner possible. Veran Medical Technologies is headquartered in St. Louis, MO.

*Innova is a trademark of General Electric Company.


Read at BioSpace.com


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