ALung nabs $15.8M to back lung-device rollout

Pittsburgh's ALung Technologies wrapped up a $15.8 million round of new financing, money that will back a broader global rollout of its lung-assist device.

The new Series B-1 financing round reaffirms an ongoing trend in medical device industry venture financing. Companies these days are more likely to win financial backing when they have a product that is near approval or already cleared for sale. ALung's Hemolung respiratory assist device is approved both in Europe and Canada, and the company says it already has direct commercial operations in Germany, France and the United Kingdom, plus pending deals with distribution partners in other markets.

Investors were also enticed by the market prospects for Hemolung, which carries out a form of respiratory dialysis known as extracorporeal carbon dioxide removal for patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). That's a market that they see hitting the $4 billion mark, providing an enticing return on investment, the company notes, in part because Hemolung gives patients a better quality of life as it doesn't require intubation or invasive mechanical ventilation on which other lung devices rely.

ALung CEO Peter DeComo noted in a statement that the funding infusion also will help support the company's new product development.

"This financing will permit further development of next-generation products and platform technologies for providing less-invasive extracorporeal lung support," he said.

Allos Ventures led the round, which also included West Capital Partners, Birchmere Ventures, BlueTree Capital Group, PLSG Accelerator Fund, Smithfield Trust Company and a number of private investors. ALung raised a $10 million Series B in February 2012 and says it has attracted $56 million in equity capital to date.

- read the release

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