Fresenius adds blood purification tech to its dialysis offerings via partnership

Dialysis magnate Fresenius Medical Care, a leading provider of hemodialysis machines, has entered into a partnership to help commercialize the cytokine adsorber CytoSorb to combat sepsis and other infections that can lead to organ failure. The financial terms of the pact with product developer CytoSorbents were not disclosed.

The blood purification therapy CytoSorb complements Fresenius' extensive dialysis offerings. CytoSorbents says the product is compatible with standard hemodialysis machines and blood pumps. Patients' blood is pumped through the CytoSorb cartridge which contains the medication's porous polymer beads designed for purification.

The partnership will also provide CytoSorbents with a strong distribution network, according to its CEO, Dr. Phillip Chan. "Fresenius Medical Care has tremendous resources and people, and an unparalleled distribution network for both acute and chronic dialysis products across the world. This will enable us to put CytoSorb into the hands of physicians in these countries quickly and help make this unique therapy available to patients in great need," he said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Fresenius vice president Christian Schlaeper said the partnership will strengthen his company's blood purification portfolio. In addition to hemodialysis machines and accessories, the company's Renal Pharmaceuticals unit offers four drugs focused on end-stage renal failure.

CytoSorb is designed to combat the "Cytokine storm" associated with severe inflammation reactions, and has a CE mark in the European Union, with plans underway for FDA approval as well.

Germany's Fresenius has been a willing partner. In September it agreed to hand over a trove of real-world data on sufferers of chronic kidney disease and end-stage renal disease to CRO Covance ($CVD), allowing that company to apply its analytics know-how to better understand treatment patterns, patient adherence and the safety and efficacy of on-the-market treatments.

And CytoSorb also has applications in the device-rich field of cardiology, for it also has also been used intraoperatively during open heart surgery, according to the product website.

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