Will heart failure sensor startup CardioMEMS be wireless health's first big acquisition target? Medical device maker St. Jude Medical just announced a $60 million equity investment in CardioMEMS, which includes the exclusive option to acquire the startup for $375 million after certain milestones are met. The current investment also grants St. Jude a 19 percent stake in CardioMEMS.
Cash flush with more than $200M
The new investment follows an almost $40 million round in May and an additional $22 million in funding that the company raised last summer. All told, CardioMEMS now has more than $200 in venture capital from investors including St. Jude, Medtronic, Arcapita Ventures, Boston Millennia Partners, Easton Capital Partners, Foundation Medical Partners, Arboretum Ventures, Deerfield Capital Management, Vision Capital Advisors, Aperture Venture Partners and Rockport Venture Securities.
The CardioMEMS wireless heart failure sensor is a miniature device that is implanted into the patient’s pulmonary artery using a simple, catheter-based procedure, according to the company. The pulmonary artery pressure is then measured and displayed using the CardioMEMS proprietary electronic monitoring system. Following the procedure, patients perform wireless measurements of their pulmonary artery pressure from home. The pressure data is then transmitted to a secure database and is available for review by the implanting physician on the CardioMEMS proprietary website.
CHAMPION trial results
The company recently announced the results of its nearly three year-long CHAMPION trial (CHAMPION stands for: CardioMEMS Heart Sensor Allows Monitoring of Pressure to Improve Outcomes in NYHA Class III Patients.) One of the topline results from the trial: The number of hospitalizations for heart failure patients reduced by 38 percent over the the full duration of the study. This class of patients experience symptoms of heart failure with only mild exertion, according to the company. This group represents about 1.5 million of the six million heart failure patients in the US and accounts for about 50 percent of all heart failure hospitalizations.
CardioMEMS first announced its heart failure pressure management system in 2006.
For more on St. Jude's deal with CardioMEMS, read the release here