What You Need to Know About Hyalex Orthopaedics
Headquartered in Boston, Hyalex Orthopaedics launched in May 2017 as a medical device company that intends to advance new products featuring HYALEX technology, a synthetic polymer that mimics cartilage.
“Backed by a body of scientific research and a leadership team with over 10 years of experience in orthopedics, Hyalex is poised to develop an innovative approach to treat osteoarthritis (OA) by replacing cartilage in joint surgery,” said Wende Hutton, a Hyalex board member and general partner for Canaan Partners, in a statement at the time. “While joint replacement surgery is a viable option for many patients experiencing joint degeneration, younger patients may encounter some limitations in mobility and face future joint revisions. A less invasive approach to treat osteoarthritis has significant potential and is needed to help these patients live full, active lives.”
The company licensed some of its technology from Stanford University. The HYALEX synthetic biomaterial mimics the unique mechanical structure and function of the hyaline cartilage that lines joints, such as the hip, knee, shoulder and ankle. “The HYALEX polymer has the potential to replace damaged cartilage in joints, creating the opportunity for a bone-sparing and more anatomic solution in disease states such as osteoarthritis or cartilage injuries,” said Mira Sahney, the company’s president and CEO.
Mira Sahney – president and chief executive officer. Prior to joining Hyalex, Sahney was senior vice president and general manager at Smith & Nephew, where she led the growth and sale of the gynecology division to Medtronic for $350 million. Before Smith & Nephew, she was president and co-founder of Myomo.
Robert Richard – vice president Research and Development. Prior to joining Hyalex, Richard was Senior Director of R&D for the Surgery Business with Davol/CR Bard, and Director of R&D for Interventional Radiology with Boston Scientific and Manager of Biomaterials R&D for Johnson & Johnson/DePuy Orthopaedics.
Hyalex launched with a $16 million Series A financing led by Canaan Partners. Also participating was Osage University Partners and Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JJDC.
The company’s pipeline consists of developing the Hyalex technology, which is a synthetic biomaterial that acts like the hyaline cartilage found in the lining of the joints, for specific product applications in small and large joints as well as the extremities.
Cartiva offers a cartilage implant for osteoarthritis of the big toe, which has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Active Implants, an orthopedic implant company, offers a CE marked hip system outside the US and has an artificial meniscus currently in clinical trials.
What to Expect
A very young company, Hyalex will likely in the next year or two be moving its synthetic cartilage technology into the clinic.