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With £8.5M funding, this UK medical device startup hopes to transform dialysis treatment less invasive

Image credits: Pathfinder

Currently, preparing a patient for dialysis involves a significant surgical intervention associated with risks for the patient. Also, it comes at a significant cost. Pathfinder Medical is a medical device company aims to transform dialysis treatment with its minimally invasive, precision-guided device.

£8.5M investment

Now, Pathfinder has secured £8.5 million in a funding round led by investors BGF and Parkwalk. Also, a host of industry insiders and existing investor Deepbridge Capital participated in the round. Notably, BGF has invested over £100 million in a range of groundbreaking medtech companies to date with recent investments in OrganOx, Vasorum and Locate Bio.

Pathfinder has embarked on a mission to improve outcomes for vascular procedures. The company intends to use the investment to support additional pre-clinical work, complete a pivotal trial in patients, and ultimately secure regulatory approval prior to commercialisation in key medical markets across the world.

Sorin Popa, CEO of Pathfinder Medical, said: “Our technology has the power to significantly improve the outcomes for dialysis patients, improving their quality of life and saving millions of pounds in the process. We are delighted to have the support of BGF and Parkwalk to help the business move forward with our clinical trials and ultimately roll-out this ground-breaking product to a global market.”

Lucy Edwardes Jones, investor at BGF, commented: “We are delighted to be backing Pathfinder, an early stage medtech business with an innovative technology and a clear path to regulatory approval. There is a significant opportunity in the dialysis field, where Pathfinder’s technology has the potential to positively impact on the lives of millions of patients. We are excited to add another ground-breaking business to BGF’s ever-expanding life sciences portfolio.”

New hires to its team

In addition to the investment, Chas Taylor will join the board of Pathfinder as Chairman. Taylor is a serial entrepreneur in the medical device industry, having founded and exited three companies in the vascular space (MedNova, Novate, Veryan).

Also, Stefano Ciampolini will join the company as Non-Executive Director. Ciampolini is a serial healthcare entrepreneur, having founded and successfully exited several companies in the dialysis and renal care sector including UK dialysis company Renal Services.

Cassie Doherty, investor at Parkwalk commented: “We are pleased to join BGF leading this investment round and delighted that Chas and Stefano have been appointed to the Board, bringing further medtech, vascular and renal expertise to support the company at this exciting stage.”

Uses proprietary tech

Pathfinder was founded in 2014 by Robert Dickinson and Sorin Popa following the latter’s research at Imperial College London into the use of electric fields for guidance in medical device procedures.

The medtech has developed a proprietary technology that will guide and accurately align catheters in endovascular procedures. This will let clinicians to make connections across blood vessels in the body sans the necessity to perform open surgery.

The key application of this technology is in the field of dialysis, which requires a robust connection between an artery and a vein to enable the effective filtering of the blood. Traditionally, this procedure was done through an open surgical procedure.

Pathfinder has brought advancements in this segment with its device, which enables a minimally invasive, endovascular approach. This approach avoids surgical trauma, and improves the outcomes for patients with kidney failure while saving the cost for payers.

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