HighLife SAS, has announced the closing of a €12.3 million investment round led by Sofinnova Partners which becomes the main investor in the company.
Based in Paris, HighLife SAS is an early-stage medtech company focused on the development of a unique trans-catheter mitral valve replacement (TMVR) system to treat patients suffering from mitral regurgitation.
HighLife was started in 2010 by Georg Börtlein, who was previously a co-founder with Professor Jacques Séguin and Chief Operating Officer at CoreValve Inc., a pioneer in the development of trans-catheter aortic valve implantation supported early on by Sofinnova Partners until the sale to Medtronic in 2009 for more than $700 million. The company had previously secured financing from LivaNova PLC, which also participated in this financing round along with Georg Börtlein, the CEO and founder of HighLife.
The HighLife technology relies on the initial placement of a ring component around the native mitral leaflets in a reversible manner. Once this first component’s position is confirmed, the bioprosthesis is delivered within minutes through the ring and finds its natural position inside the native annulus regardless of the access site. This approach allows for trans-septal access and delivery of the bioprosthesis after navigating up the femoral vein and reaching the native mitral valve via a puncture through the inter-atrial septum. Such route alleviates the need for a trans-apical puncture in the weakened heart muscle and is favored by physicians because further trauma to the patients is avoided.
“This investment enables us to implement our aggressive development plan and move forward with both our ongoing clinical programs and our R&D pipeline. We are currently recruiting patients in several European countries including France and Germany and are now planning to accelerate the enrollment of this initial clinical phase,” said Georg Börtlein.