Arrow International (Reading, Pennsylvania) said it would sell its implantable drug infusion pump business, with the closing expected this month, saying the division's marketing and research investments are too costly. The company said that although implantable drug pumps represent a potentially promising future opportunity, funds needed to make it a significant contributor to future revenues do not match up well compared with other opportunities in Arrow's critical care and cardiac assist businesses, such as LionHeart and CorAide. Arrow said it would record a small loss on the sale in 2Q02, though it will be offset by an investment gain and will not be material to the overall second-quarter results. The Arrow LionHeart LVAS is a fully implantable destination therapy. Arrow also develops disposable catheters and related products for critical and cardiac care.
Jostra AG (Hirrligen, Germany), a supplier of products for open-heart surgery, said it has acquired the main fields of business of competitor LifeStream International (The Woodlands, Texas). The operations of LifeStream business sectors will be continued by Jostra without interruption and integrated into the Jostra-Bentley Corp. organization. LifeStream is a manufacturer of tubing sets for open-heart surgery. Its product line includes oxygenators, blood pumps, reservoirs and arterial filters for heart surgery. The products will be integrated into Jostra's product portfolio. Jostra said the acquisition of LifeStream is the second important strategic step – following the takeover of Bentley Cardiopulmonary from Edwards Lifesciences (Irvine, California) in July 2000 – to establish its presence in the U.S. Jostra now will have production facilities in Germany, Puerto Rico, Sweden, Denmark and the U.S. Jostra last year acquired Polystan, a Danish company that makes pediatric heart surgery equipment.
Novametrix Medical Systems (Wallingford, Connecticut) said that a special meeting of company stockholders will be held April 9 to vote on its proposed acquisition by Respironics Holdings, a wholly owned subsidiary of Respironics (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) in a stock-for-stock deal valued at about $90 million. Novametrix manufactures cardiopulmonary monitors and sensors that noninvasively and continuously monitor cardiac output, respiratory mechanics and levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Its products are used in neonatal, pediatric and adult intensive care units, respiratory care and emergency departments, operating rooms and patient transport, as well as in the home.
German drugs group Schering AG (Berlin) offered to buy Collateral Therapeutics (San Diego, California) in a stock-for-stock deal valuing the U.S. biotech firm at $159 million. Schering AG said it planned to swap $140 million in stock for the 88% of shares it does not own in Collateral, which develops gene therapy products for cardiovascular disorders. Schering said in a statement that stockholders owning about 26.7% of Collateral common stock had agreed to vote in favor of the takeover, which offers each Collateral share 0.1847 Schering American Depositary Receipts. Collateral Therapeutics discovers and develops gene therapy products for the potential treatment of cardiovascular diseases by promoting and enhancing angiogenesis, a natural biological process that results in the growth of additional blood vessels which can carry blood flow to oxygen-deprived tissues. Schering AG is already the exclusive worldwide licensee for Collateral's two lead products, preliminarily called Generx in Phase IIb/III clinical trials, and Genvascor, which is currently in Phase I. They are potential treatments for stable exertional angina due to coronary artery disease and peripheral vascular disease. Together with Schering, Collateral is exploring opportunities involving non-surgical cardiovascular gene therapy products, focusing specifically on: angiogenesis, myocardial adrenergic signaling and heart muscle regeneration.
Synovis Interventional Solutions, a wholly owned subsidiary of Bio-Vascular (St. Paul, Minnesota), has completed its acquisition of Emtech (Lino Lakes, Minnesota), a privately held company with manufacturing capabilities in injection molding, computer numerical control machining and tool building. The cash-and-stock transaction, valued at $2.15 million, includes the purchase of the Emtech business and the 20,000-square-foot building in which it is located. Synovis is moving some of its current interventional business operations into the new facility, and will subsequently begin to manufacture components for several Bio-Vascular products. Synovis manufactures micro-wire forms used in interventional devices for cardiac rhythm management, neurostimulation and vascular procedures.
TriVirix International (Chapel Hill, North Carolina), a medical device contract manufacturer said it is purchasing a Milaca, Minnesota-based manufacturing facility from Medtronic (Minneapolis, Minnesota). TriVirix said it will retain all 65 employees currently employed at the facility, and the company will serve as a supplier for Medtronic going forward. Terms of the purchased were not disclosed. Over the last 18 years, employees at the Milaca facility have built a variety of products for Medtronic's cardiac rhythm management, neurological, EP Systems and cardiac surgery businesses. These include programmers that set therapeutic parameters for patients with implantable pacemakers, defibrillators and neurological devices; temporary external pacemakers; ablation systems; and a range of other products.