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Medical Device Company Lands $30M for Clinical Trials

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Kona Medical Inc., a medical device developer in Bellevue, Washington, has secured $30 million in series C venture funds, the third financing cycle after initial start-up. The round was led by an undisclosed large-cap medical technology company, and joined by existing investors Essex Woodlands, Domain Associates, Morgenthaler Ventures, and BioStar Ventures.

Kona Medical, founded in 2009, is developing a treatment for severe high blood pressure, or hypertension, using ultrasound for the ablation of the renal nerves, located near the renal arteries that provide blood flow to the kidneys. Renal nerves are part of the sympathetic nervous system that affects stress in humans as well as internal organs, and can play a role in determining blood pressure.

The Kona technology uses ultrasound to ablate the renal nerves, as a non-invasive treatment for hypertension, particularly for patients who do not respond to medication. The company cites recent clinical data showing that ablation of renal nerves can help relieve hypertension in patients whose blood pressure is not adequately controlled by medication — between 10 and 20 percent of people with hypertension — a market valued at several billion dollars worldwide.

Kona Medical expects to use proceeds from the financing for clinical trials and to add staff in both Bellevue and the San Francisco Bay Area as its technology advances. The Kona technology is based in part on inventions by the company’s founder and CEO Michael Gertner, who is both an M.D. and engineer, and holds more than 100 patents.

The company also announced the addition of John Bowers, a former vice president at SonoSite Inc., who joins Kona Medical as Chief Operating Officer. SonoSite, recently acquired by Fujifilm, is a developer of point-of-care ultrasound devices.

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Hat tip: Fortune/Term Sheet

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