A Device For Hypertension After All?
Despite industry-wide contraction last year after Medtronic's SYMPLICITY, some believe a hypertension device is just around the corner. With a market estimated in the billions or even tens of billions of dollars, both Medtronic and Boston Scientific are launching redesigned studies, and a determined handful of medtech start-ups continue to pursue a device-based solution for treating hypertension with invasive and noninvasive approaches, including renal sympathetic denervation through radiofrequency, ultrasound, or drugs; neuromodulation in the forearm; and cold therapy to specialized cells in the neck.
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The big slice of the device industry, from large-cap firms to venture capitalists, with some stake in the renal denervation opportunity are trying to understand the new reality now that Medtronic’s pivotal Symplicity renal denervation device trial missed its endpoint.
Starting as the first company with a device therapy for resistant hypertension, CVRx was soon competing with the renal denervation avalanche, along with trying to survive the economic collapse and a failed trial. Fortunately, the company had gotten its funding when the getting was good.
Unlike other renal denervation technologies that apply destructive energy to the entire renal artery wall, , Ablative Solutions Inc. has developed a catheter-based approach that delivers ethanol directly to the nerves that encircle the renal artery, and destroys them without damaging the artery walls . The company is developing its Peregrine System for use in an outpatient setting to restore normal blood pressure in medication-resistant hypertensive patients.