Sorin Group (BIT:SRN) said it invested $20 million in a minority stake and controlling option in Minnetonka, Minn.-based Respicardia, which is developing implantable devices to treat central sleep apnea.
Milan, Italy-based Sorin also said it won CE Mark approval for its new Memo 3D ReChord mitral valve annuloplasty device.
In exchange for its investment in Respicardia, Sorin gets an exclusive option to acquire the company and exclusive rights to distribute Respicardia’s Remedē system for 5 years in parts of Europe.
In the past 14 months, Respicardia had disclosed $17 million in funding; past investors in the company include Three Arch Partners, Versant Ventures, Polaris Ventures Partners, Accuitive Medical Ventures and Affinity Capital Management.
The Remedē system is a pacemaker-like device that delivers electrical pulses via an implantable transvenous lead to the phrenic nerve to restore a more natural and less-disrupted breathing pattern. The device received CE Mark approval in 2010 and is currently being evaluated in an FDA trial.
Central sleep apnea disturbs the normal breathing pattern during sleep with an impact on cardiovascular health, affecting more than 5 million patients worldwide. More than a 3rd of heart failure patients suffer from central sleep apnea.
"Together with our [cardiac rhythm management] devices and our neuromodulation platform under development, this investment further demonstrates our commitment to developing innovative solutions for heart failure patients," CEO André-Michel Ballester said in prepared remarks.