A Medical Device Daily

Still River Systems (Littleton, Massachusetts), a provider of proton therapy solutions, reported the closing of a private financing round of $33 million co-led by Venrock Associates and existing investor Caxton Health and Life Sciences, with participation by CHL Medical Partners.

Proceeds from this financing will accelerate the development of the company's Monarch250 Proton Therapy System. Still River Systems says it is "committed to advancing the field of radiation treatment by providing an affordable and accessible proton therapy option for cancer patients."

"Completion of this financing illustrates the investment community's confidence in Still River's business model and our ability to execute on our plan," said CEO Marc Buntaine. "Given today's economic environment, this strong financial support is a true endorsement of our growing leadership in the radiation therapy marketplace. We are pleased with the continued participation of our existing investors and warmly welcome our new investor partners, Venrock Associates and CHL Medical Partners." In conjunction with this financing, Dr. Anders Hove of Venrock Associates and Dr. Myles Greenberg of CHL Medical Partners will join Still River Systems' board of directors.

In other financing news:

• JumpStart, a Northeast Ohio venture development organization that accelerates the progress of high-growth, early-stage businesses, and Case Technology Ventures (CTV), a pre-seed stage venture capital and technology validation fund at Case Western Reserve University, recently reported an investment commitment of $375,000 in Neuros Medical (all Cleveland), a company commercializing neurostimulation technology developed at Case.

Neuros' technology, which was created by Drs. Kevin Kilgore and Niloy Bhadra of Case's Department of Biomedical Engineering and MetroHealth Medical Center, in partnership with the Cleveland Functional Electrical Stimulation Center, is referred to as Nerve Block and delivers high-frequency stimulation to sensory nerves in the peripheral nervous system to block chronic pain. The system consists of an electrode (also known as a lead) placed around a peripheral nerve and powered by a pacemaker-size generator that is implanted into the chest cavity, abdomen, or lower leg.

Because the generator operates in a much higher frequency range than conventional neurostimulation devices, Neuros' technology is able to stop nerve activity to block pain completely, as opposed to simply masking the pain signal, according to the company. Case has secured a patent for this high-frequency application and has an additional two patents pending.

The company's initial target market is patients with chronic pain, specifically residual limb pain, a common occurrence after undergoing limb amputation due to vascular disease, circulatory issues, diabetes, cancer or trauma-related events.

The company said it is conducting investigational studies and will use the JumpStart and CTV investment to complete the testing.

• CorAssist Cardiovascular (Herzliya Pituach, Israel), a developer of therapeutic devices for diastolic heart failure (DHF), said it has raised $5.25 million in a private financing led by Aurum Ventures MKI. The round was joined by previous investors Ofer Hi-Tech Group, Yozma Management, Evergreen Venture Partners and Argonaut Ventures.

"We have made significant progress with the ImCardia, as well as with our minimally invasive devices, the ImCardia-MIS and the CORrolla," said CorAssist CEO Amir Loshakove. "This additional capital enables us to continue the execution of our strategy of leadership in therapeutic devices for DHF."

The ImCardia is an elastic device placed on the outer surface of the left ventricle. According to the company, a "breakthrough preclinical study" has shown the ImCardia to harness elastic energy produced by the left ventricle during systole (contraction) and to release the energy and assist the heart during diastole (relaxation).

The company has implanted the ImCardia in six patients in a multi-center safety clinical trial. Patients have shown the ImCardia to be safe with three months, six months and with the first two patients, nearly 12 months follow-up, CorAssist said.

The CORolla is an elastic device placed inside the left ventricle through minimal invasive procedure. Preclinical studies have shown the device to be safe and to improve diastolic function. First implantation in humans is expected early next year.

"I am convinced that with our new and current investors, and with our team, we can achieve our goals and introduce a line of therapeutic devices that will make a difference for DHF patients," Loshakove said.

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