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Low-Shock Defibrillator Maker Cardialen Inc. Raises $17M

The Minneapolis-based medtech startup’s lifetime financing now tops $30 million.

Low-Shock Defibrillator Maker Cardialen Inc. Raises $17M
Cardialen Inc. president and CEO Jeff Peters (Photo courtesy of Cardialen Inc.)

A Minneapolis company developing a low voltage implantable device designed to be less painful than the “high-energy shocks” of today’s defibrillation devices has raised $17 million in its Series B round.

The recipient of the funds, Cardialen Inc., said Wednesday it would use the new capital to advance its clinical program, which would involve continued human testing of its unpinning termination (UPT) therapy. Cardialen’s use of UPT therapy is based on recent studies that suggest patients receiving high-energy shocks and more of them from modern ventricular fibrillation devices could lead to increased mortality compared to patients with a low-energy device that shocks less often.

Beyond human studies, Cardialen plans to dedicate a portion of the new funds toward the initial development of its own implantable device to treat heart rhythm disorders.

“We think Cardialen’s UPT therapy meets a unique need in the large current and potential defibrillator market,” said Jay Schmelter, managing director of RiverVest Ventures—a St. Louis-based investment firm that participated in Cardialen’s round. “Early UPT therapy results look promising and we’re looking forward to partnering with Cardialen on this innovative approach.”

Aside from RiverVest, three other investment firms took part in the round: China-based Qiming Venture Partners, St. Louis-based Cultivation Capital, and HBM Healthcare Investments of Switzerland.

“This round of financing gives Cardialen the capital to establish acute safety of UPT therapy for the treatment of various tachyarrhythmias,” said Cardialen president and CEO Jeff Peters in a statement. “We are thrilled to have such a strong syndicate of investors joining the team.”

Futhermore on Peter’s point on investors joining the team: a member of RiverVest, Qiming and HBM Healthcare will all be taking a seat on Cardialen’s board concurrent with the financing. A member of Cultivation Capital was not added to the board, however, because Cardialen’s board already contains a staffer from the investment firm.

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