DIAGNOSTIS AND TREATMENT: Funding to further bio-optics products

Three start-up companies developing medical devices have raised new funding to support product development and commercialization.

Electro-Optical Sciences, Inc.

Electro-Optical Sciences (Irvington, NY), developer of MelaFind, a noninvasive, point-of-care instrument to assist in the early diagnosis of melanoma, raised approximately $11.8 million. The money was generated by a stock sale to fund continued development and precommercialization activities. The company reports that MelaFind has been studied on approximately 6000 skin lesions from approximately 4500 patients at more than 30 clinics. In these tests, MelaFind missed fewer melanomas and produced fewer false positives than the skin-cancer specialists who participated in the studies. MelaFind combines advanced imaging technology with specialized algorithms.


Innolume (Dortmund, Germany) says it has secured a Series C round of financing for €8.6 million (US$12.6 million). The funds will help further two major initiatives, including enhanced production and marketing of its quantum-dot laser products for medical and other applications. Juergen Kurb, CEO of Innolume, said, “this funding will also enable Innolume to rapidly introduce to the market novel quantum-dot-based devices aimed at specific high-value medical applications.” Innolume provides quantum-dot laser diodes and modules covering the 1000 to 1320 nm spectrum.

Michelson Diagnostics

Michelson Diagnostics (MDL; London, U.K.) credits successful results and growing sales with attracting an additional €600,000 (US$1.1 million) from investors. The funds will help MDL complete development of its hand-held in vivo optical coherence tomography (OCT) probe. The device is designed for cancer diagnosis and treatment, and uses OCT to provide real-time images of sub-surface tissue at near-cellular resolution without tissue removal.

“We are very excited about the breakthrough in image quality that this system offers,” said Mr. Colin Hopper, senior maxillofacial surgeon at University College Hospital, London. “OCT could revolutionize the surveillance of precancers in the mouth and eliminate the waiting time for biopsy results. It should also minimize surgery through improved disease mapping. This will provide cost effective treatments with improved cure rates.” –BG

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