Houston-based Procyrion, Inc. has made it into Texas biotech headlines several times, most recently in late January when the company announced that it had received a second tranche of $1.5 million in funding from the Texas Emerging Technology Fund. Now, in the wake of the successful 2014 Texas Life Science Forum, which was held in late February, it appears that Procyrion has made good use of its financial support, having been recognized by the Rice Alliance as a “Top Life Science Company” for its Aortix™ medical device. BioNews Texas has profiled the Aortix before, which is “the first catheter-deployed circulatory assist device intended for long-term use in the treatment of chronic heart failure,” according to a recent press release. Of the 55 different biotech and pharma companies that participated in this year’s forum, only 10 of them received this distinction.
The award was given as a result of a deliberation among a group of investors, industry experts, and business leaders representing the biotech and life sciences industries from around the nation, who selected the top ten presenting companies based on a wide range of judging factors, such as product and service offering, unique differentiators, market opportunity, and strength and experience of the management team. Rice Alliance Managing Director Brad Burke, who announced the winners at the event, explained that “Every year the quality of companies improves,” at the event, and adding that, “This year we had a diversity of companies including rapid, in-office diagnosis of ENT illnesses to a catheter-based, minimally invasive heart pump for the treatment of chronic heart failure. As a group, the companies this year are further along which makes them more appealing to current investors, who have commented on the improved quality of the companies.”
Procyrion’s Aortix™ device was developed by Texas-based Dr. Reynolds M. Delgado III, who serves as the Medical Director of Mechanical Support at the Texas Heart Institute. The device is “a percutaneous intra-aortic continuous flow pump delivered by a catheter inserted through the femoral artery and held in place using novel self-expanding anchors.” What makes the Aortix such a novel medical device is its small size and unique design, which allows for a minimally invasive outpatient procedure. It only takes about ten minutes to complete the procedure in total.
The Texas Life Science Forum is just one stop for Procyrion, as the company continues to generate interest and excitement over the Aortix. Currently, Procyrion’s executive and R&D teams will also present the Aortix at the American College of Cardiology’s 64th Annual Scientific Session & Expo in Washington D.C. March 29 – 31, 2014 and the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation’s 34th Annual Meeting & Scientific Session in San Diego April 10 – 13, 2014.