Devices & Diagnostics

Neurotechnology firm Checkpoint Surgical raising $3M series B

Checkpoint Surgical, which has developed an intraoperative nerve stimulation device, is about a third of the way to completing a $3 million series B investment round. The suburban Cleveland company hopes to close the round by year’s end. Checkpoint would use the funding to boost its sales and marketing staff, more than doubling its employees […]

Checkpoint Surgical, which has developed an intraoperative nerve stimulation device, is about a third of the way to completing a $3 million series B investment round.

The suburban Cleveland company hopes to close the round by year’s end. Checkpoint would use the funding to boost its sales and marketing staff, more than doubling its employees from seven to 15, and maybe even a few more, CEO Len Cosentino said.

Checkpoint has received commitments so far for about $1 million of its anticipated $3 million round, with most of the funding coming from the NDI Healthcare Fund. Checkpoint is one of several companies spun off from NDI Medical, a Cleveland-area neurotechnology incubator.

The company’s handheld, disposable device, called the Checkpoint Stimulator/Locator, stimulates motor nerves so surgeons can avoid damaging them during surgery. The device also helps physicians gauge nerve and muscle health. It’s used primarily by orthopedic, plastic and ear, nose and throat surgeons, Cosentino said.

Checkpoint received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (pdf) clearance to sell the device in late 2009. The company recently secured two U.S. patents that Cosentino described as “important intellectual property protection” for Checkpoint’s technology.

Another big part of Checkpoint’s immediate plans consist of developing a second version of the Stimulator/Locator that could be used arthroscopically. “It would be used for less-invasive surgery, but do the same thing,” Cosentino said.

The arthroscopic device is still in the early product development stages.

Finally, Checkpoint is looking to add new geographic territories to its sales base, which will happen once it hires a bigger sales force. Sales are currently strongest in the Midwest and West, but the company is looking to add customers in large metropolitan areas in New England, the Southeast and the Southwest, Cosentino said.

Checkpoint closed a $1.7 million series A round last year. Cleveland venture development group JumpStart and the Medical Growth Fund were among the investors in the round.