Lightpoint Medical nabs EU approval for cancer molecular imaging device

Lighpoint Medical's LightPath device--Courtesy of Lightpoint Medical

Surgical imaging company Lightpoint Medical snagged a CE mark for its molecular imaging device, charting a win as it dials up development for the product overseas and in the U.S.

The Rickmansworth, England-based company's LightPath Imaging System helps surgeons make sure that they remove all cancerous tissue during surgery, potentially cutting down on costs and the need for repeat operations--especially for breast cancer where many patients require additional surgeries, the company said in a statement. The device works by screening for Cerenkov Luminescence, a faint light produced by positron emission tomography imaging agents that are injected before surgical procedures.

Lightpoint recently launched its product in Europe at the European CanCer Organization in Vienna. Now, with European approval in tow, the company plans to roll out the device in the U.S. in 2016.

"We are delighted to have achieved the major landmark of CE mark for Lightpoint's first product offering: the LightPath Imaging System," Lightpoint Medical CEO David Tuch said in a statement. "Bringing LightPath to market is an important milestone in our efforts to transform cancer surgery."

EU approval also helps Lightpoint at it builds momentum for its device. In August, the company won a $2.6 million grant from the National Cancer Institute for clinical trials of its molecular imaging technology, EnLight, to diagnose lymph node and gynecological cancers. EnLight uses proprietary technology to pinpoint microscopic cancer deposits, facilitating less-invasive surgery while reducing the risk of cancer recurrence or reoperation, the company said at the time.

A couple of weeks later, Lightpoint struck a global contract deal with PartnerTech to build, test and distribute LightPath, ramping up operations at it prepares to expand the product's international reach.

"Our goal is to bring accurate tissue assessment into surgery to the benefit of both surgeons and patients. We understand the need to improve current surgical practice and are very pleased to be working with such a renowned manufacturing partner, who bring both expertise and high quality to everything they do," Tuch said at the time.

- read the statement

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