Endo Tools Therapeutics, a spin-off from the ULB (Universite Libre of Brussels, Belgium) and developer of advanced endoscopic medical devices to treat obesity, digestive tract tumors and type II diabetes has announced the closure of a second round of funding worth €2.5 million ($3.3 million) led by a private investor with an existing interest in medical devices.
A device providing surgeons “two-handed” capability
Endo Tools Therapeutics is developing Endomina(TM), an innovative device that adds degrees of freedom and a number of therapeutic channels to existing endoscopes. Endomina provides gastroenterologists and surgeons with the capability to perform complex movements and use multiple instruments when operating. It also gives them the freedom to perform manipulations which were previously possible only via laparoscopic access. These devices offer new possibilities for advances in flexible endoscopy and for the treatment of serious conditions such as obesity, type II diabetes and tumors of the digestive system.
“For years, gastroenterologists have been limited to line-of-sight movements in their practice of endoscopy. Endomina offers them the option of working with both hands, performing complex procedures such as tying a suture knot inside the stomach, something which has not been possible up until now,” said Professor Jacques Deviere, director of the Department of Gastroenterology at Erasme hospital. “I think this is the first step towards real endoluminal surgery.”
A very competitive technological asset for hospitals…
For the patient, the reduced requirement for anesthesia associated with Endo Tools’ technology means a shorter stay in hospital, improved comfort and even treatment as an outpatient. For hospitals and healthcare systems, it means a reduction in the overall cost of intervention. More than 200,000 procedures of this type are carried out each year in Europe, representing a market worth €2 billion ($2.6 billion).
…that should also be affordable for the patients
The funding will support the production of these new devices and the award of CE mark approval within the next few months. It will also enable the launch of a pan-European (France, Germany, Belgium and Italy) clinical study. This is intended to demonstrate the efficacy and durability of complex sutures for suturing together the opposing walls of the stomach (using inverted sutures to join serosa to serosa/mucosa to mucosa) in the primary treatment of morbid obesity and in repeat bypass surgery. Initial results of the pilot study of 10 to 15 patients are expected in the first quarter of 2014, followed by results of the multi-center study of around 75 patients expected in the third quarter. These studies will enable the launch of the health insurance reimbursement process in the major European countries.
A new partnership for new synergies?
In addition to this new funding, Endo Tools Therapeutics will also have access to its new partner’s accumulated experience in medical devices. Technological synergies have already been identified, particularly with regard to knowledge and access to advanced materials and manufacturing processes.
About Endo Tools Therapeutics
Endo Tools Therapeutics S.A. (ETT) is developing a portfolio of advanced, minimally invasive medical devices to treat three of the most widespread and fastest growing diseases: obesity, digestive tract tumors and type II diabetes. The portfolio is organized around a universal triangulation platform for use on any existing endoscope through the natural orifices. The technology will improve patient comfort, reduce hospitalization length and limit investment required from the hospitals. Located in Belgium, ETT began operations in 2008, based on research led by the Universite Libre de Bruxelles. Since inception, the company has designed, developed and received the CE Mark for several products in its portfolio: Endomina(TM), Endofix(TM), Kordle and Roeleaser. ETT also performed successful first-in-human experiments, showing safety and functionality of the devices and obtained ISO 13485 certification.
Chief Executive Officer
Endo Tools Therapeutics S.A.
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