Giza Assists in Taiwanese relief efforts
In early August, Taiwan suffered one of its worst natural disasters in history as Typhoon Morakot hit its shores, leading to hundreds of deaths and billions of dollars in damage. As part of the relief effort following the typhoon, the Israel Economic and Cultural Office (ISECO) in Taipei organized a shipment of water devices from Israel to Taiwan.
The equipment, which is manufactured by Watersheer, an Israeli company specializing in purification and transportation devices for disaster-hit areas, included two tank systems for transporting water and numerous personal devices for water purification. The equipment arrived in Taiwan in the week following the disaster and helped alleviate the water shortage in southern Taiwan.
Giza, which has close ties to Taiwan, helped underwrite part of the effort of shipping the water purification equipment. We are pleased to have been able to contribute financially towards this mission in a small way and look forward to hearing only positive news from Taiwan.
In August, Giza led an investment in Cleantech startup TaKaDu. TaKaDu develops water network management software, providing water utilities with a water loss reduction solution and network monitoring. The Company’s innovative technology detects, classifies and locates multiple types of network anomalies, with focus on leakage events. It is based on mathematical models and advanced algorithms which analyze the continuous readings of meters spread across water networks.
TaKaDu was founded by serial entrepreneur Amir Peleg, whose previous company, YaDaTa (a Giza IV portfolio company) was sold to Microsoft in 2008. Joining Amir is a team of top notch mathematicians (PhDs), algorithm experts and software veterans.
In June, ActionBase was awarded a Singapore-Israel Industrial R&D Foundation (SIIRD) Grant, along with Singapore Technology partner, Imfinity, to develop new functionality for its Human Process Management (HPM) technology. The grant represents an additional step in the ongoing cooperation between Israeli and Singapore high-tech companies.
"With this grant, we plan to expand our offering and complement our platform with enhanced capabilities," said Eyal Maor, CEO of ActionBase. "This award presents an exciting way for us to more easily break into a massive market opportunity in Asia, and Singapore is one of the best places to establish relationships with local partners given its current focus in R&D and technology.
SIIRD is a bi-national cooperation program between the Singapore Economic Development Board and the Office of the Chief Scientist Israel. The program aims to promote joint industrial research and development projects between companies based in Singapore and Israel.
ActionBase has seen increasing demand in the Asia-Pacific market for its technology, which enables organizations to manage unstructured, human processes. To answer these demands ActionBase initiated its activity in Asia by establishing a network of channel partners to support sales and marketing efforts in Singapore. These business activities were followed by an additional technological partnership with Imfinity, resulting in the SIIRD project in which both companies will jointly cooperate to further develop HPM functionality.
IceCure has commenced its first clinical trial study for its breast Fibroadenoma application. The trial is being conducted at two European centers in Germany and the Czech Republic. IceCure has successfully treated 17 patients to date with its IceSense device. All these case were completed successfully.
IceSense is a minimally-invasive treatment that is performed in the physician’s office which offers a non-surgical solution with no pain, and practically no scarring or downtime.
Pathway Medical has received an additional FDA approval for the 3rd generation of its product. The Company continued to ramp up its sales in the US successfully.
In July, Pathway Medical received the European CE Mark approval for its product, including the thrombus removal intended use. The Company plans to begin sales in Europe in early Q4/09.
The Pathway system has been awarded a gold medal in the Business Week Industrial Design Excellence Awards, one of the biggest distinctions in the industrial design field.
Lucid has signed an agreement with MicroStar International (MSI), one of the world’s largest manufacturers of motherboards. MSI will utilize Lucid’s Hydra chip to boost the efficiency on its next-generation motherboard, code-named “Big Bang”.
Taiwan-based MSI believes that Lucid’s technology will help the “Big Bang” become one of the most demanded platforms among video gaming enthusiasts who plan to utilize two graphics cards for ultimate performance.
In July, BioLineRx announced an agreement with Ikaria Holdings, Inc. to obtain a worldwide exclusive license to BioLineRx’s BL-1040. BL-1040 is a potential breakthrough treatment for preventing pathological cardiac remodeling following acute myocardial infarction (AMI). The agreement is valued at $285M.
Under the terms of the agreement, BioLineRx will receive upfront and milestone payments. BioLineRx will also receive royalties on annual net sales. Ikaria will be responsible for completing clinical development and commercialization efforts. The deal is contingent upon receipt of the approval of Israeli Office of the Chief Scientist.
BL-1040, currently in a phase I/II clinical trial, is administered via the coronary artery during standard catheterization and flows into the damaged heart muscle, where it forms a protective “scaffold” that enhances the mechanical strength of the heart muscle during recovery and repair. BL-1040 is the first program to graduate from the BIJ (BioLine Innovations Jerusalem) incubator subsidized by the Israeli Office of the Chief Scientist.
Morris Laster, CEO of BioLineRx said, “This agreement is consistent with our business model of developing early-stage programs through human Proof of Concept trials and ultimately partnering with a global therapeutics company that has the expertise and resources to complete development and. Ikaria’s deep and singular focus on therapies for patients in acute care settings makes it an ideal party to further develop and bring BL-1040 to the global market.”
“The acquisition of the rights to BL-1040 reinforces our commitment to deliver novel treatments to critically ill patients around the world,” commented Daniel Tass?, President and CEO of Ikaria. “Millions of patients suffer from MI each year, and BL-1040 represents the potential of an exciting solution to the problem of ventricular remodeling following AMI, for which the unmet need remains very high.”
In July CircuLite was awarded a Fast-Track Phase I-II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The grant will be used to fund development of a pediatric circulatory assist device based upon CircuLite’s Synergy Pocket Micro-pump.
The Company will collaborate with the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine on the grant. The total potential award for Phase I and Phase II could reach $3.7 million.
Synergy is a micro-blood pump, the size of a AA battery, that can be implanted superficially in a pacemaker-like pocket. It is the smallest device designed for partial circulatory support and long-term use in adult patients with Class IIIb and early Class IV heart failure. Synergy is currently in a CE Mark clinical trial at multiple centers in Europe.
The Synergy device was provides partial circulatory support for the failing adult heart, but its small design makes it a logical candidate for a pediatric application. The aim of Phase I of this grant is to modify the current CircuLite device to be useable in a child and to determine the feasibility of short-term in vivo use. In Phase II, the child system will be finalized and examined in a long-term in vivo study and an infant device will be developed and tested.
“This NIH grant is a strong endorsement for Synergy’s unique approach to heart failure treatment, as well as its potential utility to pediatric patients due to its small size and minimally invasive implantation procedure,” said Paul Southworth, President and CEO of CircuLite. “While other devices are in development for children and infants, CircuLite believes that Synergy has unique advantages over these other technologies, particularly given its prior successful experience in human clinical trials and its later stage of development as we approach European CE Mark approval later this year.”
Dr. Bartley P. Griffith, chief of the Division of Cardiac Surgery and director of Heart and Lung Transplantation in the Department of Surgery at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore and co-investigator on the grant, adds, “Existing devices do not meet the need for circulatory assistance in pediatric patients, even as hundreds of infants and children with congenital or acquired cardiovascular disease die each year while waiting for a donor heart To-date, ventricular assist devices designed for adults have not successfully been redesigned for infants and children, due to difficulties in the miniaturization process of these devices. The goal of this NIH grant is to develop long-term implantable miniature partial circulatory support devices for infants and children, built upon the technology of the already micro-sized Synergy device.”
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