A Medical Device Daily

Health Discovery Corp. (HDC; Savannah, Georgia) reported that it has signed a licensing agreement with Smart Personalized Medicine (SMP), founded by Dr. Richard Caruso, chairman and founder of Intergra Life Sciences (Plainsboro, New Jersey), to work to develop a breast cancer prognostic test using HDC's support vector machine (SVM) technology in collaboration with University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (Houston).

Under the terms of the agreement, HDC will receive a 15% equity position in SMP, based on up to a $5 million initial investment from SMP investors. In addition, HDC will receive a per-test royalty up to 7.5% based on net proceeds received from the sale of the new breast cancer prognostic test.

"Now that a formal license agreement has been signed between Smart Personalized Medicine and HDC, we are ready to begin immediate development of what we believe could become a superior breast cancer prognostic test using HDC's SVM technology," said Caruso, who serves as CEO of Smart Personalized Medicine. "If our efforts prove successful, HDC shareholders can greatly benefit from this exciting development."

"This is a tremendous opportunity for HDC to participate with Dr. Caruso as he pursues his goal to develop a superior breast cancer prognostic test to compete with other such tests like OncotypeDX provided by Genomic Health [Redwood City, California]," said Dr. Stephen Barnhill, chairman/CEO of HDC.

During negotiations earlier this month, Caruso resigned his role as a board member of HDC and assumed a role as a senior advisor for the company in order to independently negotiate the license and development agreement with HDC

Through the application of its patent-protected technology, HDC develops SVM-based molecular diagnostic and prognostic tests in genomics and proteomics, as well as, digital image analysis in pathology and radiology.

In other dealmaking news, private equity fund manager Summer Street Capital Partners (Buffalo, New York) has acquired Willcare (also Buffalo), a regional home healthcare company with more than 1,500 employees providing skilled nursing, therapeutic, paraprofessional and case management services to about 4,500 patients in upstate New York, the state's Hudson Valley region, and Northeast Ohio.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, though Summer Street uses its aggregate $300 million under management to make equity investments that typically range from $5 million to $30 million in companies with annual revenues of $20 million to $100 million.

Willcare CEO Todd Brason and CFO David Brason will retain their posts and remain shareholders of the company.