A Medical Device Daily

Pacific Biosciences (Menlo Park, California), a private company developing what it calls a "transformative" DNA sequencing technology, said it has raised an additional $68 million.

The current financing comes from a combination of new and previous investors, including strategic investments from Monsanto and the Wellcome Trust. Sutter Hill Ventures joins the list of the company's institutional investors, many of which also contributed additional capital to this latest financing round.

"We are excited to be part of investing in a new generation of DNA sequencing technology that has the power to unlock how inheritance and environmental factors affect human health," said Bill Castell, chairman of the board of governors for the Wellcome Trust.

Previous investors include: Deerfield Management, Intel Capital, Morgan Stanley, Redmile Group, T. Rowe Price, Mohr Davidow Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, Alloy Ventures, Maverick Capital, AllianceBernstein, DAG Ventures, Teachers' Private Capital, and Blackstone Cleantech Venture Partners.

"The fact that we have been able to raise a total of $188 million since last summer, during a very difficult economic market, is further validation of our business and the promise of our disruptive technology platform," said Hugh Martin, CEO of Pacific Biosciences. "We are delighted a global leader in agricultural biotech and premier trust for healthcare are joining our growing list of supporters by making strategic investments in our company."

Pacific Biosciences plans to launch the commercial version of its SMRT (single molecule real time) sequencing system in the second half of 2010.

In other financing activity, NiTi Surgical Solutions (Chesterfield, Missouri), a surgical device company, reported the completion of a financing round, in which the company raised roughly $18.5 million. The round was led by Forbion Capital Partners (Naarden, the Netherlands), with additional participation from existing investors including: Evergreen Venture Partners, Israel Healthcare Ventures (IHCV), MBVC and Alice Lab, and SCP Vitalife. In conjunction with this closing, Avi Molcho, MD, venture partner at Forbion, will join NiTi's board of directors.

Proceeds from this financing will be used to support the marketing and roll-out of the company's ColonRing and to advance ongoing and new R&D of BioDynamix Anastomosis Technology programs. The ColonRing was launched in the U.S. just last month (Medical Device Daily, July 14, 2009), and NiTi says the device has been "very well received by users due to its excellent wound healing capabilities." The ColonRing represents a "revolutionary closure technology for surgeries such as colon cancer surgery and has been successfully applied in over 2,200 patients," NiTi said.

NiTi's shape memory surgical rings, clips, and appliers represent the next generation in internal tissue-closure devices, according to the company. These devices are designed for treatment of colorectal, gastric and upper gastrointestinal disease requiring surgical anastomosis.

"This recent round of financing will help us broaden our sales and marketing presence, as well as further our research and development activities to support a variety of advanced surgical products in the coming months," said NiTi CEO Itay Itzhaky.