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ABIOMED Inc. (ABMD - Analyst Report) revealed that it has acquired Berlin, Germany-based medical device maker Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH or ECP. The acquisition is in line with its strategy to provide percutaneous hemodynamic support for minimally invasive procedures for complex treatment.

ECP produces a percutaneous expandable catheter pump which enhances blood circulation from the heart with an external drive shaft. The pump has a flow rate of up to 4.5 liters/minute, and an insertion radius for the impeller and catheter of less than 10 French.

ECP carries patents or patent applications in over 40 patent families, which will expire in 2033. These patents will be added to ABIOMED’s roughly 100 patents and patent applications from the Impella device, which is the company’s flagship product for patients in need of hemodynamic support.

As a result, the acquisition will solidify ABIOMED’s position in intellectual property for axial and expandable pump capabilities.

ABIOMED has acquired all outstanding shares of ECP from Syscore GmbH for a payment of roughly $13 million in cash, with potential long-term payments of $7 million for CE Marking approval and $8 million for achieving global revenues of $125 million for products using ECP patents.

Through the ECP acquisition, ABIOMED also acquired Aachen, Germany-based AIS GmbH Aachen Innovative Solutions for about $2.75 million. AIS owns certain IP rights related to ECP’s development activities.

ABIOMED’s headquarters in Aachen, Germany will control the ECP facility in Berlin and its employees. Over time, ABIOMED plans to integrate ECP technology into its existing Impella platform. The company is looking forward to incorporate ECP capabilities into a smaller insertion device with a reusable drive shaft, as a standalone low-cost product.

A few weeks back, ABIOMED reported the implantation of over 20,000 Impella heart pumps in the U.S. Till date, the higher flow Impella CP has been implanted in over 3,000 U.S. patients, with the 3,000th procedure being carried out at the Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian.

ABIOMED’s Impella heart pump is a percutaneous pump that can be planted into the heart via the femoral artery in the thigh without the need for a surgical procedure. It enables surgeons to treat ventricular dysfunction through minimal invasion.

The Impella platform consists of the Impella 2.5, Impella CP and Impella 5.0 heart pumps, all of which have secured U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) clearance for partial to full circulatory support for up to six hours.

The addition of the Impella RP (Right Peripheral) completes the Impella platform and allows it to offer a full range of hemodynamic procedures. Impella RP is currently the subject of an investigational device exemption (IDE) clinical study and is solely limited to investigational use by the federal law.

ABIOMED recently secured CE Mark approval for Impella RP in the EU, following which it anticipates the FDA go-ahead for this novel product in early 2015.

Currently, ABIOMED carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the medtech industry are Hologic Inc. (HOLX - Analyst Report), Navidea Biopharmaceuticals, Inc (NAVB - Snapshot Report), and Wright Medical Group Inc. (WMGI - Analyst Report). All of them retain a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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