Financings roundup: Biophan in technology license; USPI board authorizes split
June 20, 2005
A Medical Device Daily
Biophan Technologies(Rochester, New York) said it has finalized an exclusive license with German biomedical researchers, Drs. Arno Bucker and Alexander Ruebben, for their stent technology enabling accurate MRI in or around metallic stents. Financial terms were not disclosed. As a company, Biophan is based on the fact that MRI has not been able to visualize the interior of metallic stents, because current generations of stents create image artifacts and do not allow visualization of the stent lumen. Procedures such as MR vessel wall imaging and plaque imaging are not possible in the stented vessel segments. The new technology, developed at the Radiology department at theUniversity Hospital (Aachen, Germany), uses a special design and material. The imaging of stent interiors by traditional X-ray angiography requires an invasive procedure and only allows visualization of the vessel lumen. Biophan’s newly licensed solution is designed to enable non-invasive, safer, less costly and more useful MRI-based imaging of stent interiors and the adjacent vessel walls. One possible additional advantage is that molecular research on the effects and physiology of drug-eluting stents could be carried out non-invasively by MRI. Together with the existing technologies already held by Biophan, including those obtained through the company’s recent acquisition ofAmris(Castrop-Rauxel, Germany), the exclusive license with Bucker and Ruebben will give Biophan licensing ownership to two of what it said are the most promising methods to create artifact-free images of stents and implants with MRI systems. “The technologies are very synergistic and the combination could prove to be very beneficial,” commented Michael Friebe, PhD, CEO of Biophan Europe. “We now have the only proven methods for non-invasive imaging of stent performance.” Biophan develops technologies designed to make biomedical devices safe and compatible with the MRI environment.United Surgical Partners International (USPI; Dallas) reported that its board of directors has authorized a 3-for-2 stock split, payable in the form of a 50% stock dividend, to be distributed on July 15 to stockholders of record at the close of business on June 30. The company currently has about 29 million shares of common stock outstanding. After the payment date of the stock dividend, the company will have about 43.5 million shares of common stock outstanding. USPI currently has ownership interests in, or operates, 92 surgical facilities. Of the company’s 89 domestic facilities, 58 are jointly owned with not-for-profit healthcare systems. The company also operates three facilities in London.