Endotronix Inc., which is developing wireless heart sensor technology licensed from NASA, received a $250,000 investment from JumpStart Ventures.
The funding from the Cleveland-based economic development group is part of a larger, undisclosed investment round, according to a statement from JumpStart.
Endotronix’s implantable technology interacts with an external, hand-held measurement instrument and allows congestive heart failure patients to remotely monitor their blood pressure.
In July 2008, the company licensed two patents for sensor technology from Cleveland’s NASA Glenn Research Center. The sensors can be implanted in the body, then wirelessly transmit findings to a hand-held or wearable device that transmits the data to a remote data center.
The company was formed in early 2007 by cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Anthony Nunez and Harry Rowland, an engineer specializing in nanotechnology manufacturing. Endotronix began to take shape in Peoria, Ill. and located in a business incubator with ties to Bradley University. Rowland was traveling and unavailable for comment.
Endotronix later added a Cleveland office, with the help of economic development group BioEnterprise Corp. and a grant from the Lorain County Community College Foundation Innovation Fund, according to NASA Glenn.
Congestive heart failure occurs when the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. It’s often caused by narrowed arteries or high blood pressure. In the United States, 5.7 million people suffer from heart failure, resulting in 300,000 deaths each year, according to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute.
Endotronix hopes its device will help patients and doctors better monitor and treat heart failure, making it less likely that a patient will need to be hospitalized.
A group called Endotronix Angels LLC filed a regulatory document last month stating that it had raised $240,000 of a hoped-for $375,000. It’s likely that the Angels’ fundraise represents at least part of the larger investment round referenced in the JumpStart news release.