Artificial heart implanted in person next year

11 April 2023

artificial heart implant

BiVacor has raised $18 million to support the continued development of its preclinical artificial heart device. Cormorant Asset Management and OneVentures, through the OneVentures Healthcare Fund III, led the funding round, according to a March 29 news release from Houston-based BiVacor.

The investments will fund the company’s continued research and development and early feasibility first in human trials. It will also support hiring for key executive positions.

“We are extremely grateful for the ongoing support from our core investors. This additional commitment further validates our technology and the need for improved options to treat end-stage biventricular heart failure,” said BiVacor CEO (and former Abiomed executive) Dr. Thomas Vassiliades.

“With this financing, we will be able to double the size of our organization and add key positions from the C-suite to research and development. We are well positioned to advance our preclinical activities and aim to conduct our first-in-human trial in 2024.”

More about BiVacor’s artificial heart

The BiVacor Total Artificial Heart (TAH) is meant to be the first long-term therapy for people with severe biventricular heart failure. The TAH’s creators based it on rotary blood pump technology. The design includes left and right vanes positioned on a common rotor to form the only moving part, a magnetically suspended double-sided centrifugal impeller.

The non-contact, magnetic suspension provides large blood gaps minimising blood trauma. Plus, it limits mechanical wear to make the artificial heart more durable, reliable and biocompatible.

It’s also worth noting that magnetic levitation is far from a new concept in heart failure device space. Abbott has had success in the left ventricular assist device (LVAD) space with its HeartMate pumps that incorporate magnetic levitation.

In fact, BiVacor officials see their TAH tech marking a successful transition of LVAD technology from volume displacement to durable rotary blood pumps. The result could be a next-gen total artificial heart that could serve as a bridge for someone awaiting a heart transplant — or even a long-term heart transplant alternative.

Said Cormorant Asset Management CEO Bihua Chen: “We are impressed by BiVacor’s world-class team and continued dedication to push the technology in the clinic. We’re excited to support their growth and vision to transform the treatment of biventricular heart failure with the world’s first fully Maglev total artificial heart.”

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