Medical device company advances novel cardiac surgical tool, initiates first-in-man trials
Connecticut Innovations (CI), the state’s quasi-public authority responsible for technology-based economic development, today announced that it has made a follow-on investment of $1 million in EpiEP Inc. (EpiEP) through its Eli Whitney Fund. This investment is part of a $1.6 million round of funding, also involving LaunchCapital and individual investors. This is CI’s second investment in EpiEP. The first investment, in the amount of $1 million, was announced in June 2010. The company relocated to New Haven, Conn., from Virginia in 2010.
EpiEP is a medical device company that has developed a novel interventional platform to enable the treatment of certain deadly cardiac arrhythmias. The company’s initial product, now being tested in first-in-man trials in Europe, is the EpiAccess™ system, which seeks to enable safe, reliable, minimally invasive access to the pericardium, or outside surface of the heart. Prior to beginning its first-in-man trials, EpiEP completed animal trials at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., in early summer 2011.
“Connecticut is committed to improving our competitiveness and investing in companies that are bringing innovative, high-tech solutions into the market,” said Governor Dannel P. Malloy. “Through our Bioscience Connecticut initiative, and our investment in Connecticut companies, we are building a research triangle right here in the state, one that will bring with it highly-skilled jobs and grow our economy.”
EpiEP Chief Executive Officer Pamela Bunes said, “We are delighted by the continued support and confidence we have received from Connecticut Innovations. Their leadership and early-stage investments in companies like EpiEP allow Connecticut to attract life science and technology startups to the state.” Bunes added, “We are grateful for CI’s lead investment and look forward to excellent results with our first-in-man trial.”
The patent pending EpiAccess™ system measures a unique pressure-frequency wave form that helps guide safe access to the pericardium, enabling better access to the surface of the heart for treatments of deadly arrhythmias. EpiEP’s intellectual property, which consists of four patents pending and two provisional patents, has been licensed from the University of Virginia Patent Foundation.
EpiEP’s team includes global thought leaders, scientists from the electrophysiology community and experienced business managers.
Russ Tweeddale, CI managing director of investments, will continue to represent CI on EpiEP’s board of directors.
About Connecticut Innovations Inc. Connecticut Innovations (CI) is a quasi-public organization dedicated to driving a vibrant, entrepreneurial, technology-based economy in Connecticut. CI stimulates high-tech growth by investing in early-stage Connecticut technology companies, university/industry research collaborations and technology transfer and collaborating with government, business, nonprofit and academic organizations to advance technology growth and promote public policies consistent with CI’s mission. For more information on CI, please visit www.ctinnovations.com.
About EpiEP Inc. EpiEP Inc. is a medical device company that is developing a platform of novel access systems which utilize a unique signature waveform to identify in real time that accurate and safe access are achieved for the minimally invasive treatment of cardiovascular disorders. The technology has been licensed from the University of Virginia Patent Foundation, and EpiEP intends to develop the technology into commercially viable medical devices.