A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

Ekos (Bothell, Washington) reported securing $26 million in Series C financing, enabling the formation of a commercial sales and marketing team to support the company's flagship ultrasound-assisted, fluid infusion catheters.

The company is developing ultrasound-assisted, fluid infusion catheters for diagnosis and therapy. Its Lysus peripheral infusion system and micro-infusion catheter are cleared for the delivery of therapeutic agents, including clot-dissolving thrombolytics, into the peripheral vasculature of patients with peripheral arterial occlusions and deep vein thrombosis. The latter product also is cleared for the administration of contrast media into the brain.

The company's new sales and marketing team is headed by two additions to the company: Michael Dellario, vice president of marketing and Jennifer Vaughan, vice president of sales. Dellario most recently spent 13 years with AngioDynamics (Queensbury, New York), where he worked with the company's thrombolytic devices. Vaughan, who has more than 15 years of experience in the medical device industry, comes to Ekos from Guidant (Indianapolis), where she served as the director of sales for cardiac surgery.

The company also reported the appointment of Doug Hansmann as chief operating officer. Hansmann, a co-founder of Ekos, most recently served as general manager and vice president of research for the company.

The investment was led by Ascension Health Ventures, with additional support from new investors Oakwood Medical Investors and Trellis Health Ventures, as well as previous investors CID Equity Capital, EGS Private Health-care Investors, MedVenture Associates, Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners, Morgan Stanley Venture Partners and NGN Capital.

MedMira (Halifax, Nova Scotia), a rapid diagnostic solutions developer, reported that it has closed on a previously disclosed C$6.5 million equity financing from Morningside group (Diagnostics & Imaging Week, March 9, 2006).

Under the terms of the agreement Morningside acquired 10.83 million equity units at 60 cents per unit, for total net proceeds of $5.6 million in cash after retirement of a US$775,000 promissory note. Each equity unit consists of 1 common share and one half of a common share purchase warrant, for a total of 10.83 million common shares and 5.42 million common share purchase warrants being issued.

Each warrant entitles Morningside to purchase one common share of MedMira at 69 cents per share for a two year period, ending on March 16, 2008.

Following this private placement transaction, Morning-side has become an 18.8% shareholder of MedMira.

Morningside said it acquired the securities for investment purposes only and has no current intent of acquiring any further securities of MedMira other than those related to the exercise of warrants.

"This new financing will enable MedMira to capitalize on key growth opportunities and advance key initiatives including the expanding over-the-counter market and co-infection rapid tests," said Stephen Sham, chairman and CEO of MedMira.

In other financing news:

• Salick Cardiovascular Centers (Beverly Hills, California) reported receiving an equity financing commitment of $75 million from Warburg Pincus.

Salick said it would provide diagnostic and treatment services for cardiovascular disease, principally in outpatient facilities.

Salick Cardiovascular Centers was founded by Bernard Salick, MD. The company said it is in discussions with cardiovascular groups and academic medical centers to develop and operate facilities in major metropolitan areas.

• NuGEN Technologies (San Carlos, California) a company that develops RNA amplification and labeling systems, reported securing $7.75 million in financing.

The company said it would use the funds to accelerate its technology development and expand global distribution for its amplification and detection systems for gene expression research.

The round was led by Alloy Ventures. Existing investors Sutter Hill Ventures, Radius Ventures and The Band of Angels also participated in the financing.

GE Healthcare Financial Services (Chicago) re-ported that it has arranged a $161 million senior secured credit facility for Primedex Health Systems (Los Angeles) and its primary subsidiary, Radnet Management, a provider of outpatient diagnostic imaging services in California. The $161 million facility consists of a $15 million, five-year revolving credit facility; an $86 million, five-year term loan B; and a $60 million, six-year second lien term loan.

Primedex said it would use the proceeds for refinancing a portion of existing debt, to provide liquidity for working capital and other general corporate needs.

"The facility provided by GE is a transforming financial transaction for our company," said Mark Stolper, Primedex CFO.

Primedex, through Radnet Management and affiliated entity Beverly Radiology Medical Group, is a provider of diagnostic imaging services in California through a network of 57 fixed-site centers. The company operates 34 multi-modality facilities and 23 single-modality facilities in 11 regions in California.

GE Capital Markets is sole lead arranger and sole bookrunner on the deal, while GE Healthcare Financial Services is the administrative agent.

GE Healthcare Financial Services is a provider of capital, financial solutions, and related services for the global healthcare market, with more than $13 billion of capital committed to the healthcare industry.

• BioForce Nanosciences (Ames, Iowa) reported closing on a $6 million private placement of restricted common shares at $1.50 a share.

BioForce's core technology is the NanoArrayer System, a tabletop device with the ability to print and pattern thousands of molecular domains on a chip in an extremely miniaturized format. The company also is commercializing the ViriChip System, used for detection and identification of multiple viruses and other pathogens simultaneously on a single chip.

Dr. Eric Henderson, BioForce founder and CEO, said, "With this financing, and the recent addition of key senior management, BioForce is well positioned to take full advantage of the commercial opportunities that our NanoArrayer System provides."

• Applied Imaging (San Jose, California) has closed a private placement in which it sold 773,810 shares of its common stock at a price of $1.68 per share, raising about $1.3 million in gross proceeds and $1.1 million net from certain investors.

In connection with their participation in the closing, these investors received warrants to purchase an aggregate of 193,453 shares of Applied Imaging's common stock at an exercise price of $2.52 per share.

Roaring Fork Capital SBIC is the lead investor in the placement.

Applied Imaging is a supplier of automated imaging and image analysis systems for the detection and characterization of chromosomes and molecular markers in genetics and pathology applications.