N. BILLERICA, Mass. and GUILDFORD, England, Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging Inc. and Thermocore Medical Ltd. today announced that the companies have entered into a global development and commercialization agreement for Thermocore's novel intracoronary thermographic catheter system and related platform technology. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Under the agreement, Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging has acquired the worldwide rights to develop, manufacture and commercialize Thermocore's proprietary platform technology and its intracoronary thermographic catheter system-designed to detect vulnerable plaque by mapping temperature variations inside the coronary arteries.
The development and rupture of vulnerable or unstable plaque in the coronary arteries is the prime cause of heart attack and sudden cardiac death. Comprised of deposits of fat, calcium and other substances in the inner lining of the arteries, vulnerable plaque also contains inflammatory cells which may be associated with local increases in temperature relative to normal areas of the vessel wall. When vulnerable plaque ruptures, it can trigger the formation of blood clots which, in turn, can obstruct blood flow to the heart muscle and lead to a heart attack or sudden cardiac death.
"Our agreement with Thermocore reinforces our corporate commitment to advance the field of cardiovascular imaging through innovative products and technologies," said Cory Zwerling, president, Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging. "Thermocore's novel technology platform could represent an important advance in the identification and characterization of vulnerable plaque in the coronary arteries. We are looking forward to further defining the potential of this promising technology in hopes of facilitating earlier intervention and improved outcomes for patients at risk."
"We are delighted to enter into this agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging to progress the development and commercialization of our technologies," said John Yianni, Ph.D., chief executive officer, Thermocore Medical. "Vulnerable plaque is now recognized as the major precipitating cause of heart attack and we believe that our unique technology platform has the potential to play an important role in the diagnosis and management of this disease."
Thermocore's temperature catheter system provides a thermal imaging map of the interior of the coronary arteries by incorporating a series of sensitive temperature sensors into the distal end of the catheter system. Mapping of these temperature differentials could potentially help identify and localize vulnerable plaque before it ruptures and creates blood clots that can lead to heart attack. Clinical trials will be initially aimed at defining the prognostic clinical value of identifying plaque with an elevated temperature. Subsequent clinical studies will be required to assess whether intervention based upon such identification of vulnerable plaque has a favorable effect on clinical outcomes.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging Inc. is a worldwide leader in cardiovascular imaging whose mission is to extend and enhance human life by offering innovative approaches to see deeper into the heart and vasculature. Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bristol- Myers Squibb Company , a pharmaceutical and related health care products company whose mission is to extend and enhance human life. For more information on Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging, visit http://www.bmsmi.com/.
Thermocore Medical Ltd., founded in 2000, is a privately-funded company based in Guildford, England. Thermocore Medical is active in the field of interventional cardiology and has developed a unique and novel, catheter-based system which may in the future have indications in the location and visualization of unstable plaque within the coronary arteries. For more information on Thermocore Medical, visit http://www.thermocoremed.com/.
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and involve inherent risks and uncertainties, including factors that could delay, divert or change any of them, and could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially from current expectations. These factors include, among other things, market factors, competitive product development, governmental regulations and legislation, patent positions and litigation. No forward- looking statement can be guaranteed. The technology described in this press release has not been submitted for regulatory approval. Accordingly, there can be no guarantee that the technology will receive regulatory approval or, if approved, will prove to be commercially successful. Forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated together with the many uncertainties that affect Bristol-Myers Squibb's business, particularly those identified in the cautionary factors discussion in Bristol-Myers Squibb's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2003 and in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. Bristol-Myers Squibb undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging Thermocore Medical Ltd.
Lili Gordon John Yianni, MD
978.671.8924 +44 (0) 7802 45 88 79
Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging Inc.