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Torax Medical Calls Up $30 Million



9/19/2012 7:11:44 AM

ST. PAUL, Minn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Torax Medical announced today that it has completed a $30 million Series D round of financing led by Piper Jaffray Merchant Banking. Sanderling Ventures, Thomas, McNerney & Partners, Accuitive Medical Ventures, Kaiser Permanente and Mayo Medical Ventures also participated.

The proceeds will be used to expand commercialization efforts for the company’s unique family of sphincter augmentation products. The company’s lead product, the LINX® Reflux Management System, is a surgical treatment of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). LINX was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in March following a unanimous recommendation by an FDA advisory review panel.

“We believe there is a tremendous market opportunity for a more effective treatment of reflux disease. This is a condition which has huge quality of life impacts on millions of patients and also puts many patients at risk for serious disease progression, including cancer. Given the LINX System’s extensive clinical trials, which demonstrated very significant patient benefits, we think payers and providers will support patient access to this treatment option,” said Tom Schnettler, managing director at Piper Jaffray Merchant Banking. “We look forward to assisting the company to further develop this market.”

Todd Berg, Chief Executive Officer of Torax Medical commented, “Billions of dollars are directed annually at reflux disease, but very little of this healthcare investment goes to correcting the underlying defect, which is the esophageal sphincter. In today’s cost sensitive healthcare environment, patients and payers want more. We believe the LINX System will help curb the economic burden of this disease and start to address the growing incidence of serious complications associated with insufficient treatment.”

About Torax Medical

Torax Medical, Inc. is a privately held medical device company headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota that develops and markets products designed to treat chronic diseases related to defective sphincter muscles. The company’s technology platform, Magnetic Sphincter Augmentation (MSA), employs a small implant comprised of interlinked titanium beads with magnetic cores. The magnetic attraction between the beads augments the existing sphincter’s barrier function to prevent reflux or incontinence. The devices are implanted with standard minimally invasive laparoscopic or surgical procedures. The LINX Reflux Management System for the treatment of GERD is marketed in both the USA and in Europe and the FENIX™ Continence Restoration System for the treatment of Fecal incontinence (FI) is marketed in Europe.

Targeted Diseases

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic, often progressive disease resulting from a weak lower esophageal sphincter that allows harmful gastric fluid to reflux into the esophagus. Symptoms of GERD include heartburn, regurgitation, inability to sleep, and dietary constraints. Acid suppression drugs, such as Prevacid®, Nexium®, and Prilosec®, affect gastric acid production, but do not repair the sphincter defect and allow continued reflux. GERD can progress to a pre-cancerous condition known as Barrett’s esophagus and possibly esophageal cancer. Approximately 7% of adults in western countries suffer daily from symptoms of GERD.

Fecal incontinence (FI) is the inability to control your bowel movements. The impact of FI on patients’ quality of life can be debilitating, causing absence from work and limiting the ability to engage in normal daily activities. FI affects an estimated 30 million people in the U.S. and Europe. Studies suggest FI is more prevalent in women and increases with age, but men and women of all ages can be affected.

For more information, please visit www.toraxmedical.com.

Contact:

Torax Medical, Inc.

Todd Berg, 651-361-8900

President and CEO


Read at BioSpace.com


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