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Cardiff University medical spin-out Asalus secures £292,000

Backing from existing investors will fund human trials of surgical smoke clearance device

Cardiff-based medical instruments company Asalus has completed the first closing of a funding round set to reach almost £700,000 in two tranches.

The deal, backed by regional fund Finance Wales and intellectual property commercialisation firms IP Group and Fusion IP, will facilitate the trial of a new device to clear the smoke arising from surgical procedures.

The device, produced under the name Innervision, has already passed pre-clinical trials. Asalus will use its new funding to begin testing the product on human subjects, ahead of a full roll-out next year.

Asalus, originally formed as a spin-out from Cardiff University, has specifically designed Innversion for use in abdominal surgery, or laparoscopy – which invariably entails complex procedures generating huge amounts of smoke. In the US alone two million laparoscopic operations are performed each year. The Welsh company has also developed two other devices to be used for such operations.

Dominic Griffiths, managing director of Asalus, said: “These funds will allow us to reach the critical milestone of completing a clinical trial with Innervision, and the excellent results obtained in the pre-clinical study give us confidence that the trial will meet its endpoints.”

Under the terms of the agreement, the funding trio – Finance Wales, IP Group and Fusion IP, have the option to invest a further £392,000 at a later date if Asalus achieves certain milestones.

Thanks to its continued support, Fusion now holds a 46% undiluted shareholding in Asalus. The company’s operations director, Peter Grant, said:

“Innervision, which provides a simple and highly effective means of maintaining a clear visual field during laparoscopic surgery, continues to meet its development milestones as well as excite surgeons and distributors alike.

“The product answers a clear requirement within the sector and we are very pleased with the market feedback and progress of this novel product. Asalus is a product of our strong working relationship with Cardiff University, with whom we continue to identify and develop further exciting inventions.”

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