InSightec teams with Siemens on MRI systems

Dr. Kobi Vortman

The strategic agreement became possible after GE Healthcare waived its exclusive rights to the Israeli company's systems..

Elbit Medical Technologies Ltd. (TASE:EMTC), reported today that its subsidiary (31.3%) InSightec Image Guided Treatment Ltd., had signed a non-exclusive strategic cooperation agreement with Siemens Healthineers, in which InSightec devices will be adapted to Siemens MRI systems. Following the announcement, Elbit Medical's share rose more than 3% and the company is currently traded at a market cap of NIS 178 million. InSightec has developed and marketed systems that focus ultrasound energy from several directions on a designated tissue, burning the tissue at the focus point, in a non-invasive process that substitutes surgery. During the treatment, an MRI must be used to direct the doctor to where exactly the ultrasound's energy must be focused. Therefore, compatibility with the MRI system is vital for the company.

Moreover, this move also has a marketing significance, since the larger company may encourage clients to buy and use an InSightec device in order to facilitate greater use of the MRI system. InSightec has already conducted similar cooperation with GE healthcare, which distributed the device and is also an InSightec shareholder (10%). Now that InSightec has agreements with those two firms, its product is compatible for use with most MRI devices in the world. InSightec still has no cooperation with Philips, the third large company in this field.

InSightec Vice Chairman Dr. Kobi Vortman told "Globes" in the past, "GE decided last year to sell part of its investment in the company, following which it agreed to waive its exclusivity and allow us to work with other companies. GE is currently focusing on diagnostics, while we make devices for treatment, not diagnosis. In addition, we market our product with a focus on doctors giving treatment, and less on radiologists, on whom GE focuses." Siemens' focus seems to be somewhat different.

At present, the leading application of InSightec's system is a device for the removal of Uterine fibroids (benign tumors) and it also has a commercial device for the treatment of bone metastases in cancer patients.

Two months ago, an InSightec device for removing brain tissue without opening the skulls (the device's flagship capability), was approved for marketing, initially for treatment of tremors not caused by Parkinson's Disease.

In the first quarter of 2016, the company's revenue was $2.8 million, a 115% rise compared with the corresponding quarter.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on August 15, 2016

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2016

Dr. Kobi Vortman
Dr. Kobi Vortman
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