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Calon Cardio has successfully raised £1,210,000 to continue preclinical trials for its revolutionary heart pump, the Calon MiniVAD.

The Story

Heart failure affects about 900,000 people in the UK alone, and replacement hearts are scarce – less than 1% will receive a heart from a donor. 95% of those people will die in less than two years. As a result, hundreds of thousands of patients are relying indefinitely on heart pumps (or VADs) which are only intended for temporary use. These are large, expensive to produce, install and maintain, and often cause life-threatening complications.

Led by extremely successful life sciences and med-tech entrepreneurs Simon Cartmell and Bruce Powell, Calon Cardio has designed a smaller, lighter and less expensive heart pump that aims to be safer, and last longer, than those on the market. The Calon MiniVAD utilises a novel layout with larger internal gaps which is gentler on the blood and makes the pump more ‘biologically transparent’. Combined with several other benefits of the MiniVAD, this pump could result in fewer overall hospital readmissions.

This was an EIS-eligible round led by healthcare specialist venture capitalists Longbow Capital.

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Where are they now?

Calon Cardio is currently undergoing preclinical studies for its Calon MiniVAD. Results so far have been positive, with the controller, the batteries and the clinical monitor all performing as planned. Furthermore, recent data has aligned the performance of Calon Cardio’s MiniVAD with the extracorporeal ‘best in class’ pump, Centrimag, and above other competitors.

Simon and Bruce don’t plan to commercialise the technology; instead they are planning to sell the company to one of the existing players for a considerable return for investors, thereby bringing a new, life-saving technology to thousands of people who would otherwise die in less than two years.

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