A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

Protedyne (Windsor, Connecticut), a laboratory automation provider, reported receiving a new D-round investment from a group of investors, including Allen & Company. This investment brings the total raised in the round to $10 million.

Other participants in the closing were existing investors, including The Sprout Group, Meridian Venture Partners, Long River Ventures, Village Venture Partners and Boston Community Venture Funds. Previous investors in the D round include Qiagen, a Netherlands-based provider of technologies and products for the separation, purification and handling of nucleic acids and proteins.

Protedyne said it would use the proceeds of the financing for working capital, including enhancements to its BioCube System product line, new product development and expanded marketing. Its approach combines automation expertise with data management. President Donald Schoeny said, “In just five years, Protedyne has deeply penetrated the diagnostic, drug discovery and genomic markets, giving laboratories the ability to perform research and diagnostic testing faster and more reliably. Our next generation of products will bring even more automation advances to research and diagnostic laboratories.”

Sightline Technologies (Haifa, Israel) reported receiving $10 million in new financing with the sale of Series D preferred stock. The financing round was led by NGN Capital, with the remainder of the investor syndicate including Vitalife, Infinity, Inventech and the Fishman Group.

Sightline is the developer of the ColonoSight system, an FDA-cleared technology featuring a disposable ColonoSleeve tube and sheath, used for the diagnosing and treating of abnormalities in the large intestine.

Sightline said that it would soon begin a premarketing clinical study of the ColonoSight to further validate its cost-effectiveness.

Sightline reports holding five patents and has filed 12 other patent applications. Its intellectual property covers the pioneering use of the ColonoSight system, including the EndoSight non-fiber optic colonoscope, the disposable ColonoSleeve multi-lumen tube that is covered by a compressed protective sheath, and the electro-pneumatic System Control Unit which powers the device. It says that its advanced IntraPull power-assisted disposable technology “potentially improves the safety and speed, relative to traditional colonoscopy systems, while the protective sheath places a disposable barrier between the patient, the EndoSight scope and the physician. Together, the system is designed to enable gastroenterologists to more quickly and precisely diagnose and treat abnormalities in the large intestine.

The company reported early clinical data showing that the ColonoSight system is capable of reducing the risk of infection to both the patient and physician, while potentially reducing the risk of intestinal perforation.

Avi Levy, president of Sightline, said the financing proceeds would be used “to provide growth capital” to bolster marketing and “production infrastructure.” He added: “During the next six to 12 months, the company expects to significantly increase its staff, from 30 to 50 employees.”

Kenneth Abramowitz, managing general partner, represented NGN Capital as the lead partner in this investment and will hold a board seat. John Costantino, a managing general partner of NGN Capital, will hold an observer seat.

Predictive medicine company IMI International Medical Innovations (Toronto) reported that it has entered into an engagement letter for a bought-deal private placement financing with a syndicate of underwriters led by Orion Securities and including Loewen Ondaatje McCutcheon to issue C$10 million (US$8.21 million) of units of the company. Each unit shall be comprised of a US$1,000 principal amount 7% convertible debenture and 157 common share purchase warrants, each convertible into one common share of the company.

The transaction, which is subject to the receipt of all necessary regulatory and stock exchange approvals and satisfaction of certain conditions, is expected to close on or about Aug. 30.

The debentures mature four years from the date of closing and will be convertible into common shares of IMI at US$2.85 at any time following the closing date. The debentures bear interest at the rate of 7% per year payable quarterly in cash, or, provided certain conditions are met, in common shares, or a combination thereof.

Common shares issued in satisfaction of interest payments will have an issue price of 90% of the average of the volume-weighted average price of the common shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange for the five trading days immediately prior to the applicable interest payment date.

Each warrant will have a term of five years and an exercise price of US$2.93.

The company said net proceeds of the financing would be used for working capital purposes, including accelerating the development of its cancer portfolio, expanding its pipeline of technologies and pursuing strategic growth opportunities.

IMI develops non-invasive or minimally invasive tests to detect and monitor life-threatening diseases, particularly cardiovascular disease and cancer, in the earliest possible stage when they can be effectively treated or perhaps prevented altogether.

In other financing news:

Response Biomedical (Vancouver, British Columbia) reported meeting a development milestone as part of its co-development agreement with 3M Health Care (St. Paul, Minnesota), unveiled in November 2004. It did not disclose any terms of the milestone.

3M Health Care is funding the development of a point-of-care microbiology test for infection prevention, based on Response’s RAMP technology and aimed at introducing products to improve the outcome of patients entering the hospital system.

Bill Radvak, president and CEO of Response, called hospital-acquired infections “a tremendous burden on the healthcare system, costing almost $10 billion per year in the U.S. alone, and result[ing] in approximately 12,000 deaths annually.”

3M Health Care, the largest of seven businesses of 3M (also St. Paul), develops products for medical, dental, pharmaceutical, health information and personal care markets. The 3M Medical Division develops medical supplies, with expertise in infection prevention and skin health.

Response manufactures on-site diagnostic tests for use with its RAMP System, consisting of a portable fluorescent Reader and single-use, disposable test cartridges, for the early detection of heart attack, environmental detection of West Nile virus and applications in biodefense.

AMDL (Tustin, California), a developer of tests for the early detection of cancer and other serious diseases, said it has conducted the closing of a combined Regulation D/Regulation S private offering of shares and warrants. The offering generated total gross proceeds of $670,000, exclusive of placement agent fees and expenses of $87,100.

The offering consisted of the sale of an aggregate of 2,093,750 shares of AMDL common stock at 32 cents a share and three-year warrants to purchase an additional 1,256,250 shares of AMDL common stock, including warrants to purchase 209,375 shares issued to the placement agent, all exercisable at 49 cents a share.

AMDL agreed to file a registration statement on Form S-3 by Oct. 16 to register the resale of the shares and shares issuable on exercise of the warrants.

Gary Dreher, president of AMDL, said, “We are gratified by the quick response to our offering. The proceeds will be used to fund the costs of regulatory approvals of our products and for general working capital needs.”

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