Boston Scientific leads $23M round for heart failure startup

Boston Scientific has led a $23.1 million Series B investment in NeuroTronik. The cash is intended to enable NeuroTronik to take its device for treating acute heart failure (AHF) patients through to CE mark approval.

NeuroTronik secured the money on the strength of its CANS Therapy. The experimental treatment entails inserting stimulation catheters into a vein near the heart. Once in place, the device delivers cardiac nerve stimulation in an attempt to increase cardiac output without raising the heart rate. NeuroTronik thinks this therapeutic approach can improve outcomes in AHF patients while shortening the lengths of their hospital stay and cutting rates of readmission.

Investigators tested the approach in a 16-patient trial in 2015 and 2016. That study, which took place in Paraguay, stimulated participants who had stable symptomatic heart failure for 60 minutes and compared measures of blood flow dynamics from this period with baseline readings.

The study was the centerpiece of the work plan NeuroTronik plotted out when it raised $13.1 million in 2013, at which time it had only recently spun out of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, business accelerator Synecor. And, with NeuroTronik CEO Fred McCoy claiming the results were “outstanding," the firm has once again been able to raise money.

NeuroTronik raised the Series B money from Boston Scientific, Hatteras Venture Partners, Synergy Life Science Partners, Lord Baltimore Investment Partners, Mountain Group Capital and Sovereign’s Capital, plus other unnamed financial and industry backers.

The financing will enable NeuroTronik to continue clinical development of CANS Therapy with a view to gathering the data it needs to secure clearance to sell the device in the European Union. When NeuroTronik raised money in 2013, it hoped to secure a CE mark within 4 years and a FDA nod within 6 years.