NI Medical‘s diagnostic device will be used in a far-ranging European Union-funded clinical study of heart disease and heart failure patients.
The company’s NICaS Cardiac Surveyor uses impedance technology to measure heart health. The device measures several blood circulation data points, including stroke volume, cardiac output, peripheral resistance and respiratory rate. The NICaS device is designed to help diagnose heart failure — which occurs when the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs — in its early stages.
NI Medical was founded in Israel, and earlier this year, it set up a U.S. base of operations in Akron, Ohio. The company has just one employee in Akron — Chief Operating Officer Tom Hitchcock — but it plans to add more shortly and eventually base its international sales team in Northeast Ohio, Hitchcock said.
The European study, called HeartCycle, is aimed at helping heart failure patients better manage their disease through the use of telemonitoring technology. The four-year study was called “one of the largest biomedical and healthcare research projects in the EU” when it was announced in 2008. The study is being led by Royal Philips Electronics and has a budget of 20.7 million euros ($28.6 million using today’s exchange rate) and is largely funded by the EU.
Inclusion in such a high-profile study is significant for NI Medical because it’ll help raise awareness among clinicians of the company’s technology, which received regulatory approval for sale in the United States last year, Hitchcock said.
The study’s chief scientific medical officer is renowned cardiologist Dr. John Cleland, the Foundation Chair of Cardiology at the University of Hull in the United Kingdom. “We selected NI Medical’s NICaS for this trial because it has proven to be accurate, cost-effective and easier to operate than technologies offered by many other device makers,” Cleland said in a statement from NI Medical.