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Start-Up News: New Twists in Spine and Orthopedics

Executive Summary

A brief discussion of a few new companies in the spine and orthopedic surgery market that presented at Medtech Insight and Windhover Information's IN SPINE & ORTHOPEDICS conference in Las Vegas, December 2006.

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Headlines Obscure Robust Year for Devices in 2006

Although big companies grabbed the headlines with problems, 2006 proved to be a strong year for the medical device industry and growth prospects look strong. Our selection of the device industry highlights of 2006 includes: Boston Scientific-Guidant deal: the winner may be Abbott; Device IPO market remains strong; Drug-eluting stent safety debate; Conflicts of interest: (physician relationships with companies); The bid for Biomet; VC Pendulum shifts towards medical devices; Kyphon bids for St. Francis; and Diagnostic imaging and in vitro diagnostics converge.

Dynamic Stabilization Rocks Spine

In the US acceptance of dynamic stabilization devices (DYNs) has been strong owing to the compelling advantages of DYNs over artificial discs, including that they can be implanted from a posterior route, do not violate the disc space and the procedure is reversible. Rather being an alternative to fusion, artificial discs will likely compete with DYNs.

Impliant Inc..

Emboldened by recent acquisitions in its industry, Impliant Inc. is beginning pivotal US trials on TOPS, a spinal stablization device that could offer surgeons an alternative to fusion.

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