A Medical Device Daily

Alliance Health Networks (Salt Lake City) reported that it has closed a $3.3 million Series C Preferred Stock financing led by Highway 12 Ventures (Boise, Idaho). EPIC Ventures (Salt Lake City), Series B lead investor, also participated in the Series C round along with other leading Internet and healthcare industry angels. Alliance Health has now raised a total of $6.6 million in venture capital.

Since 2006, Alliance Health has been focused on building the tools and platforms necessary to create a universe of health-related social networks, each focused on specific diseases and health interests. Its first property, DiabeticConnect.com, has more than 50,000 registered members and is now the largest online social network for people living with or treating diabetes.

"Here's a company that is able to infuse the power of social networks directly into online communities of fellow sufferers, caregivers and healthcare providers where they can share stories, ideas, and information and literally help one another manage their health issues. Social networking can be transformative for patients specifically and for the healthcare industry generally. We're very excited to invest in Alliance Health to help them take what they've developed with DiabeticConnect.com and extend their powerful social networking platform to other chronic diseases and health conditions."

Alliance Health will use the proceeds from this financing to accelerate growth by launching several new social health networks during the next 12 months. Additionally, the company will expand its outreach to companies interested in engaging more authentically with its customers.

In other financing activity: Nuveta (Portola), a privately held medical device company and global leader in basic in vitro fertilization (IVF) research, reported that it has closed a Series A seed financing round, solely funded by Vivo Ventures (Palo Alto, California). The company plans to use the proceeds from this $800,000 financing to complete proof-of-principle studies on its lead program, designed to improve the culture media used during the IVF process.

While organizations are conducting research in the IVF field, few are addressing fundamental questions that may ultimately improve clinical outcomes.

As a result, Nuveta's IVF research has limited competition, and is coupled with near-term milestones and a potential 510k filing as early as 2011. IVF culture media and supplements are regulated by FDA as Class II medical devices, generally allowing for 510k clearance as the commercialization pathway.