Boston Scientific is adding on to its heart rhythm management business again, this time with a deal to acquire atrial fibrillation device startup Cryterion Medical for $202 million.
The cash payment covers the 65 percent of Cryterion that the Marlborough, MA, medical device giant does not already own. Boston Scientific (NYSE: BSX) had been an investor in Cryterion, based in Carlsbad, CA, since it launched in 2016. Besides its Southern California headquarters, Cryterion also has offices in Montreal, Canada, and Wexford, Ireland.
Atrial fibrillation, the irregular and sometimes rapid beating of the heart, can be treated with drugs or surgery. The surgical procedure, called cardiac ablation, can use heat formed by radiofrequency (RF) energy to destroy the heart tissue that causes the misfiring of the electrical signals that regulate heart rhythm. Cryterion has developed an experimental device that uses extreme cold to perform the ablation. The Cryterion device reaches the targeted heart tissue through a catheter, and the company says its system was designed to improve maneuverability and positioning within the challenging anatomy of the heart.
Cryterion is testing its medical device in a clinical trial in Europe, where it plans to file for regulatory approval early next year. The company is also preparing to test the device in the U.S. to support a filing with the FDA. Cryterion says it expects to begin enrolling patients in a U.S. study next year.
Cryterion’s device will add cryothermal ablation to the RF ablation capability Boston Scientific already has in its portfolio. Kenneth Stein, senior vice president and chief medical officer of Boston Scientific’s rhythm management division, said in a prepared statement that the acquisition will provide another choice for cardiac ablation procedures, based on physician preferences and patient needs.
Boston Scientific has made a number of deals in the past year to build up its portfolio of medical devices for the heart. In January, it invested $90 million in Santa Rosa, CA-based Millipede, a deal that also gave it the option to acquire the startup. In April, Boston Scientific paid $40 million to acquire the rest of the shares of Cleveland, OH-based Securus Medical Group that it did not already own.
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