Cambridge, MA-based NinePoint Medical said this morning it has raised $33 million in a Series A round of funding from Third Rock Ventures of Boston and Prospect Venture Partners of Palo Alto, CA, and it’s planning to quickly beef up its staff with 25 additional workers over the next year.
NinePoint is aiming high with its technology. It wants to develop optical devices that can allow doctors to inspect potentially cancerous cells inside the body during procedures such as biopsies. The firm also plans to enable doctors in remote locations to review tissue images from procedures as they are taking place somewhere else. This would presumably shorten the time it takes for doctors to diagnose a patient’s cancer with traditional biopsies. The firm said it will initially develop devices for examining the gastrointestinal tract.
Chuck Carignan has been tapped to lead NinePoint as CEO. A surgeon by training, Carignan was previously the chief medical officer of Novasys Medical of Newark, CA. Prior to joining Novasys, he was chief medical officer of the Natick, MA-based medical devices giant Boston Scientific (NYSE:BSX).
“With Chuck’s extensive experience in developing and commercializing minimally invasive products and the company’s access to advanced, proprietary visualization technology, we believe NinePoint is well positioned to lead the convergence of access, diagnosis and treatment and develop truly transformational medical devices,” said Mark Levin, a co-founder and partner at Third Rock, in a statement.
NinePoint is the first medical devices outfit to get seed financing from Third Rock, Levin noted. Since it launched in 2007, Third Rock has primarily invested primarily in young drug developers such as Agios Pharmaceuticals and Zafgen, both of Cambridge.
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