Origami-engineered device ‘could prevent brain haemorrhage’

Posted on April 8, 2021 by Jonathan Symcox

Brain

An Oxford University spin-out has raised £7.3 million to develop a device which could prevent brain haemorrhage. 

Oxford Endovascular is developing a treatment for brain aneurysms which it says will overcome challenges with existing medical devices. 

Brain aneurysms are surprisingly common, affecting 1 in 50 people. If a patent has a rupture, they have a high chance of dying or suffering permanent brain damage.  

The company has developed a micro stent called OxiFlow️ (below), utilising ‘Origami’ engineering, which can be inserted into the brain blood vessels via minimally invasive groin access.  

OxiFlow

This lies across the base of the aneurysm and causes it to shrink and heal.  

Developed by world leading professors of neuroradiology and engineering, this next-generation ‘flow-diverter’ can be placed more accurately and safely than existing treatments, reducing the risk of complications and having to use multiple devices. 

“The current device market for brain aneurysms is valued at well over $1 billion and is growing rapidly year-on-year,” said CEO Mike Karim.  

“One of the biggest challenges when it comes to treating neurovascular disease is having devices with high efficacy whilst minimising adverse events. 

“Studies show that often multiple attempts are made to place treatment devices, as they often have challenges of landing accurately, opening and maintaining position. This can lead to adverse events and multiple devices being used.  

“Procedures typically cost over $50,000 to treat a brain aneurysm and a next-generation flow diverter overcoming unmet needs, offers the chance for more effective, safer and cost-effective treatments as well as allowing many more patients to benefit.  

“We plan to use this funding to bring Oxford Endovascular’s ground-breaking technology to the next stage and gain clinical data from human studies.” 

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The funding includes a £3m investment from new investors Vulpes Investment Management, who joined to lead the round and funds from the Additio Investment Group.  

Existing investors Oxford Sciences Innovation PLC, Parkwalk Advisors, Perivoli Innovations, Oxford Investment Consultants, the University of Oxford and private individuals also followed on. 

Martin Diggle, Portfolio Manager, Life Sciences at Vulpes Investment Management, commented: “The life sciences team at Vulpes are excited to be participating in the next stage of the development of Oxford Endovascular’s innovative technology.  

“We believe this platform has the potential to become a world leader in its field.” 

Alun Williams, Investment Director at Parkwalk Advisors, the leading investor in UK university spinouts, said: “Parkwalk are delighted to have invested in Oxford Endovascular.  

“This raise is testament to the extraordinary work and innovation of a great team of development engineers and inventors and will help the company through its next stages of research.” 

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