Echo gets $20M in financing to market glucose monitor

Echo Therapeutics ($ECTE) is angling to get regulatory approval for its wireless, non-invasive glucose monitor, and the company now has a $20 million line of credit to speed the process, thanks to Platinum-Montaur Life Sciences.

Symphony tCGM is Echo's candidate device, using the company's needle-free drug delivery tech to continuously monitor blood glucose levels in diabetics. The company has yet to file for approval with any regulatory agency, and the credit line will come in handy as Echo tries to get Symphony on shelves around the world, CEO Dr. Patrick Mooney said.

"We believe the increased liquidity and financial flexibility provided by this financial commitment will enhance our ability to aggressively move Symphony toward regulatory clearance in both Europe and the United States," Mooney said in a statement.

Echo, a company tied to MIT's Robert Langer, faced continued delays over the launch of Symphony, initially expecting to get the product on the market in 2011, after hearing from the FDA that it would need only minor tweaks before approval. As it turns out, however, Symphony must go through the Health and Human Services Department's Combination Products Department, Echo told FierceDrugDelivery in March, further prolonging the process.

The extended wait isn't doing Echo any favors financially, either. In the second quarter, the company's net loss widened to $3.2 million, compared to $2 million in the same period in 2011, due in part to Echo's more than doubling its R&D budget.

In any case, Echo has continued to tout positive results for Symphony and its Prelude transdermal tech, and the company is focused on the future, Mooney said. "In the second half of the year, our focus is to establish plans for CE mark and FDA pivotal trials for Symphony, advancing toward European and U.S. regulatory clearances and, ultimately, Symphony's commercial launch," he said.

- read Echo's release
- check out its Q2 results