Thoratec Acquires Catheter-Based Heart Pump Technology


January 26, 2010

January 26, 2010 – Surgical ventricular assist device (VAD) maker Thoratec Corp. acquired a catheter-based pump technology and plans to develop a minimally invasive, axial flow pump that can be delivered percutaneously in the cardiac catheterization lab.

Thoratec is paying a cash purchase price of $8.5 million to Getinge AB for the technology. The company expects to incur incremental development costs of up to $3 million in 2010

Thoratec said it plans to offer a device that can provide fast and minimally invasive acute cardiac support for hemodynamically unstable acute myocardial infarction, high-risk percutaneous coronary intervention and post-cardiotomy patients. The company said the device will provide greater flow rates and a smaller size than existing devices. Thoratec expects to commercialize the device in the next several years.

Known as a PHP (percutaneous heart pump), the device is an axial flow pump, which is inserted through an 11 French introducer sheath that is expandable to 21 French, with an elastomeric, collapsible impeller and cannula that is driven by an external motor via a flexible drive shaft. In a laboratory setting, the device has generated greater than 4.5 liters per minute of flow against normal physiological pressures.

"We already have a very robust product pipeline that includes continued enhancements to our HeartMate II platform, including the recently announced smaller version of the HeartMate II, and our fully magnetically levitated HeartMate III. This transaction provides a unique opportunity to develop a device that complements and expands upon our existing MCS offerings," said Gary F. Burbach, president and chief executive officer of Thoratec.

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