Angiotech Pharmaceuticals (Vancouver, British Columbia) reported completing its purchase of biomaterials engineering and biosurgical products manufacturer Cohesion Technologies (Palo Alto, California). Initially announced last September, the all-stock merger is valued at about $42 million and combines Angiotech's drug-coating technology with Cohesion's biomaterials business. Each share of Cohesion common stock will be exchanged for a share of Angiotech common stock at a fixed ratio of 0.11688. Angiotech is focused on developing drugs used to enhance the performance of medical devices and biomaterials, and is most often cited in connection with its paclitaxel coating technology in the drug-eluting stent sector. The company plans to combine its paclitaxel coating technology with Cohesion's technologies for improved effect following surgery. Cohesion products include CoSeal, a synthetic vascular sealant produced from biocompatible polymers; CoStasis, a liquid sprayable hydrogel used as an adjunct to hemostasis in surgical procedures; and Adhibit adhesion prevention gel.

CardioTech International (Woburn, Massachusetts) said the SEC declared effective its registration statement on Form S-4 in connection with its proposed acquisition of Gish Biomedical (Rancho Santa Margarita, California) via a stock swap. The statement includes a joint proxy statement/prospectus that was sent to the shareholders of both companies in early February. CardioTech and Gish have scheduled shareholder meetings for March 5. The companies said they believe the resulting combined organization will be capable of achieving greater financial strength, operational efficiencies, access to capital and growth potential than either company could separately achieve. The deal, first reported in October, calls for each issued and outstanding share of Gish common stock to be converted into the right to receive 1.3422 shares of CardioTech common stock. Based on the number of shares of Gish stock outstanding, CardioTech said in October that it expected to issue about 4.8 million new shares of common stock in the transaction. Gish specializes in making products used in open-heart surgery, vascular access and orthopedic surgery. CardioTech is developing a polyurethane-based vascular graft (artificial arteries) for the treatment of heart disease, and it produces medical polyurethanes for use in implantable medical devices, wound dressings and medical devices on an OEM basis.

Edwards Lifesciences (Irvine, California) reported the acquisition of the percutaneous mitral valve repair program of Jomed NV (Beringen, Switzerland), a provider of products for minimally invasive vascular intervention, for about $20 million. The acquisition includes all technology and intellectual property associated with the program. Michael Mussalem, chairman and CEO of Edwards, said that the purchase not only offers an extension of the company's current options for treating valve disease but also grows the sector. He put the current opportunity for heart valve treatment at $850 million annually and that the new offerings, once developed, could double that figure by 2010. Researchers have been exploring two primary approaches to percutaneous valve repair: One is direct valve access through a catheter to deploy repair techniques on the valve's interior components; an alternative approach is to access the coronary sinus, a cavity that surrounds the exterior of the mitral valve, through a catheter to deploy devices designed to constrict or reshape the misshapen valve. Edwards' current percutaneous heart valve repair research and development program focuses on the Alfieri edge-to-edge procedure, which reduces mitral valve regurgitation by using the direct approach to access and stitch the valve leaflets together to ensure improved closing and sealing. Acquisition of the Jomed program, Edwards said, provides "the ability to develop the coronary sinus approach." It said it would continue to pursue both approaches as complementary "and necessary to achieve an optimal clinical result."