Pathway Founder Gets Startup Itch, Ekos Endures Tough Year, EndoGastric Bags $21.5M, & More Seattle-Area Life Sciences News

Xconomy Seattle — 

Seattle biotechies must have gorged on too much turkey in the holiday week, because the news was slow, slow, slow this week. But there were a few interesting things to say about medical devices.

Tom Clement, the founder of Kirkland, WA-based Pathway Medical Technologies, told me that after six months of scouting around the University of Washington as an entrepreneur-in-residence, he’s getting the “itch” to start a new company. As one of the region’s leading medical device entrepreneurs, this sounds like it will be something to watch.

—Bothell, WA-based Ekos, which markets an ultrasound technology that helps drugs to better dissolve blood clots, gave me a detailed update on how it has persevered during a rough year for the medical device industry. CEO Bob Hubert says the company still expects to reach its goal of breaking even by the second half of 2010.

Tony Blau, a stem cell scientist at the University of Washington, offered up an intriguing guest editorial about what he considers will be a better way of running clinical trials for cancer drugs. Jay (Marty) Tenenbaum of CollabRx and Leroy Hood of the Institute for Systems Biology were co-authors on the piece.

–EndoGastric Solutions, a Redwood City, CA-based medical device company with operations in Redmond, WA, said it closed on a $21.5 million Series E round of financing. The company makes minimally-invasive surgical devices for chronic heartburn and other gastrointestinal diseases. EndoGastric previously raised around $82 million, from firms like Advanced Technology Ventures, Chicago Growth Partners, DeNovo Ventures, Foundation Medical Partners, MPM Capital, and Oakwood Medical Investors, according to PE Hub.