St. Jude nabs CE mark for Infinity DBS for movement disorders

Infinity Deep Brain Stimulation System--Courtesy of St. Jude Medical

St. Jude Medical ($STJ) has received a CE mark for its latest neuromodulation technology--the Infinity Deep Brain Stimulation System to treat movement disorders. The franchise is the latest addition to St. Jude's neuromodulation business, which last quarter grew faster than the company's other groups in cardiac rhythm management, atrial fibrillation and cardiovascular.

The Infinity DBS system is the only upgradeable system available to patients with movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease, tremor and dystonia, according to the company. It's available in two sizes.

The Infinity DBS system "represents a major step forward in our DBS product portfolio, demonstrating St. Jude Medical's commitment to patient-centric solutions to help alleviate the debilitating effects of movement disorders," said Dr. Eric Fain, M.D., group president at St. Jude Medical, in a statement. "Not only are we able to offer therapy solutions for a broad set of indications for movement disorders, but we've also designed the system to provide patients the best possible experience with their therapy while helping physicians manage their patients more efficiently and effectively."

The system provides mild electrical pulses to specific targets in the brain in order to stimulate the structures involved in motor control. It consists of a neurostimulator implant and lead wires that carry the pulses to the brain. It's expected to provide more focused and directed therapy than conventional DBS, which typically cannot steer electrical current in a specific direction.

The device works in conjunction with an Apple iPod Touch to manage the therapy. Physicians will use an iPad Mini to program the Infinity DBS device. Both connect wirelessly via Bluetooth technology. 

St. Jude already markets a pair of DBS systems for levodopa-responsive Parkinson's disease patients: Brio and Libra. The company had $118 million in neuromodulation sales last quarter, a gain of 10% over the same period a year earlier.

"The new St. Jude Medical Infinity DBS system is enabling physicians to improve management of our patient's symptoms so we can tailor our therapy approach and provide optimal treatment solutions unique to the patient," said Dr. Jan Vesper, a professor of functional neurosurgery and stereotaxy at Heinrich Heine University in Dusseldorf, Germany and president of the German Neuromodulation Society.

He added, "In addition to the benefits associated with the new Infinity platform, with the St. Jude Medical directional lead physicians will have access to a tremendous leap forward in technology that has the potential to support improved patient outcomes and potentially reduce side effects."

- here is the announcement