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Medtronic to acquire EPIX Therapeutics
DUBLIN—Medtronic plc has announced a definitive agreement to acquire EPIX Therapeutics, Inc., a privately-held medical device company that designs and manufactures a novel, catheter-based, temperature-controlled cardiac ablation system for the treatment of patients with cardiac arrhythmias, including atrial fibrillation (AF). When completed, the EPIX acquisition will expand the Medtronic cardiac ablation portfolio to offer physicians a comprehensive suite of tools to treat patients with cardiac arrhythmias.
EPIX’s flagship technology, the DiamondTemp ablation system, is a temperature-controlled, irrigated RF ablation system for treating patients with AF. The DiamondTemp system is a closed-loop system with open irrigation and high-resolution electrograms, providing physicians with improved feedback and control during the ablation procedure which may improve AF treatment success. The DiamondTemp system uses radiofrequency (RF) energy to create scar tissue in the heart and complements the Medtronic cryoballoon technology that uses cryo energy to isolate the pulmonary veins (PVI).
“The DiamondTemp ablation system stands out from other RF ablation technologies because of the real-time temperature control via rapid power modulation. This results in shorter procedure times and higher confidence in lesion quality,” said Atul Verma, M.D., Southlake Regional Health Center in Newmarket, Canada, and global principal investigator for the DIAMOND-AF II study. “I've had the pleasure of working with EPIX to design the DIAMOND-AF II trial and I look forward to continuing that work with Medtronic.”
The DiamondTemp system received CE Mark in Europe in 2017 and is limited to investigational use in the U.S. The DIAMOND-AF trial, which completed enrollment in October 2018, will support approval of the DiamondTemp system in the U.S. for patients with symptomatic paroxysmal AF. Additionally, the DIAMOND-AF II trial, which is currently enrolling patients, is evaluating the DiamondTemp system in patients with persistent AF.
“The DiamondTemp cardiac ablation system represents leapfrog technology in the RF cardiac ablation space, a segment of the market where we haven't previously participated,” noted Rebecca Seidel, vice president and general manager of the Atrial Fibrillation Solutions division, which is part of the Cardiac and Vascular Group at Medtronic. “When combined with our existing leading cryoballoon technology, we expect to provide physicians with a complete portfolio of best-in-class cryo and RF systems.”
The EPIX acquisition is expected to close in Medtronic’s fourth fiscal quarter, which runs January 26 to April 26, 2019, subject to the satisfaction of certain customary closing conditions. EPIX is currently pre-revenue, and although the acquisition is expected to be dilutive to Medtronic’s near-term adjusted earnings per share, Medtronic intends to offset the dilution. The transaction is expected to meet Medtronic’s long-term financial metrics for acquisitions. Additional terms of the transaction were not disclosed.