Galway healthcare firm targets US market

By Geoff Percival

Galway-based medical device company Neurent Medical is targeting full commercialisation of its flagship product and entry into the US market in the next three years. 

The Oranmore company is a spinout from NUI Galway. 

It has raised €9.3m in financing from a variety of sources to advance a treatment for rhinitis, an inflammatory disease affecting the nasal cavity.

The money will be used for product development, the carrying out of clinical trials and preparation for US commercialisation. 

The investment will also allow Neurent create up to 25 senior management and technical and functional jobs over the next 18-24 months to boost its R&D, manufacturing and quality and regulatory assurance capabilities.

Symptoms of rhinitis include a sustained runny nose. It is the fifth most common chronic disease in the world, affecting around 30% of the global population.

Neurent is developing a single-use device for doctors to treat the condition much the same way laser eye treatment works for eye patients.

Neurent is led by co-founders David Townley and Brian Shields. It is targeting doctors using the device in their offices, under local anaesthetic, in a 15-minute procedure, thus avoiding hospital treatment and high healthcare bills for patients.

The company is currently planning for an on-the-ground US presence and is talking to distribution agents there. 

It is also planning to introduce the product in Europe directly after its planned commercialisation in the US in three years.

Mr Townley said the company is now well-capitalised, but a flotation may be considered. 

The new funding round was led by Dublin-based life sciences investment firm Fountain Healthcare Partners, while Atlantic Bridge Capital, the Western Development Commission and Enterprise Ireland also participated.

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