Profound Medical partners with Philips just after reverse merger

TULSA-PRO device--Courtesy of Profound Medical

Profound Medical ($PRN) went public on the Toronto Stock Exchange last month and raised $25 million in June. Now, it's partnered with Royal Philips ($PHG) to develop its novel, minimally invasive prostate gland ablation tool to be used on Philips' MRI systems.

The company said it would soon release 12-month data from a 30-patient study designed to support a CE mark for its TULSA-PRO (Transurethral Ultrasound Ablation) device to treat prostate cancer patients. Profound expects to achieve commercialization of the device in Europe and Canada next year.

Profound's technology combines magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to guide an ultrasound thermal energy treatment that is delivered via the urethra to ablate the prostate gland. It's designed to only require one session and to be more accurate than some other forms of ablation. Its device is being developed for use specifically with Philips' Ingenia and Achieva 3T MRI systems.

"With 3T MRI emerging as a technology standard for multi-parametric MRI diagnostic imaging of the prostate, our collaboration with Profound Medical will enable us to offer our customers access to a novel MR guided ultrasound ablation therapy that's critical to prostate care research," Christopher Busch, General Manager, MR Therapy at Philips Medical Systems, said in a statement. "We look forward to teaming with Profound Medical to refine the integration of our technologies and drive clinical research and reimbursement efforts with the ultimate objective to improve clinical performance and enhance the patient experience."

TULSA-PRO in use--Courtesy of Profound Medical

Side effects of prostate cancer ablation can include impotence, urinary incontinence and bowel complications; the increased accuracy with this MRI-guided technology is expected to help avoid some of those problems. The procedure ablates the whole gland in one session of less than 40 minutes. Patients return home within 24 hours of the procedure.

The Philips deal gives a bit of visibility to Profound, which can be tough for Canadian companies--and those going public via a reverse merger--to achieve.

"Philips has stepped forward and enthusiastically shares our vision for the technology. With their support, TULSA-PRO will soon be available to clinicians and patients for primary treatment of localized prostate cancer," said Profound Medical CEO Steve Plymale, CEO in a statement. "This new relationship will provide us with access to a large installed base of MRI systems and customers and we look forward to developing this mutually rewarding relationship further."

- here is the release