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Masterminds of Ardian: An Interview With Inventors Mark Gelfand and Howard Levin

This article was originally published in Start Up

Executive Summary

Start-Up interviews the inventors behind Ardian, the object of one of the highest priced venture capital-backed medical device acquisitions, and between them, five other medical device companies. The team uniquely brings a perspective of applied physiology, and the integration of systems, to the goal of device innovation. In CHF Solutions, they've addressed heart failure with a device from nephrology, in Cardiac Conetps, heart failure by way of a neurological approach to sleep apnea, and in Ardian, hypertension, by studying the functioning of the kidney.

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CMS pays 33% of its budget for patients with end stage kidney disease, a group that, in terms of patient numbers, accounts for less than 1% of the Medicare population. For all this money spent, mortality rates remain high--the one year mortality rate for patients on hemodialysis stands at 24%, a survival rate that's worse than that of metastatic cancer. In an industry traditionally resistant to change, however, changes are coming, brought about by reimbursement changes and a delivery model that can't scale-up to meet a growing population, making room for new start-ups in the space.

Renal Devices: New Blood Revitalizes Dialysis Industry

CMS pays 33% of its budget for patients with end stage kidney disease, a group that, in terms of patient numbers, accounts for less than 1% of the Medicare population. For all this money spent, mortality rates remain high--the one year mortality rate for patients on hemodialysis stands at 24%, a survival rate that's worse than that of metastatic cancer. In an industry traditionally resistant to change, however, changes are coming, brought about by reimbursement changes and a delivery model that can't scale-up to meet a growing population, making room for new start-ups in the space.

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