Beyond Blood Pressure: Endothelix Licenses Technology for Thermal Monitoring of Endothelial Function

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Endothelix Licenses Technology for Thermal Monitoring of Endothelial Function from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and Texas Heart Institute. The technology provides low-cost, non-invasive assessment of vascular health.

Houston-based Endothelix (http://www.endothelix.com), a medical device company, received an exclusive worldwide license from the University of Texas (UT) Health Science Center at Houston and the Texas Heart Institute for the thermal detection of endothelial dysfunction, a technology that is intended to help physicians to easily, quickly and inexpensively assess patients’ cardiovascular health.

The technology, which was developed jointly by the UT Health Science Center at Houston and Texas Heart Institute, measures a marker of vascular endothelial dysfunction by monitoring temperature changes at the fingertip. The endothelium is a single layer of cells that lines every blood vessel in the body and plays critical roles in governing vascular reactivity, blood flow, clotting and the development of atherosclerotic plaque. Endothelial dysfunction is known as the gateway to cardiovascular disease. It is the common mechanism by which risk factors (e.g. high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, cigarette smoking, etc.) can lead to plaque buildup and eventually heart attack or stroke. Endothelix is positioning itself as a leader in endothelial function monitoring.

“Current imaging techniques such as MRI and CAT scan, although very useful, cannot be repeated on a weekly or monthly basis for continuous patient monitoring. Endothelial function monitoring can fill the gap between heart attack risk factor measurements, such as blood tests, and advanced imaging technologies like heart scans.” said Dr. Morteza Naghavi, the founder of Endothelix, inventor of the technology , and former director of the Vulnerable Plaque Research Center at the UT Houston Health Science Center and the Texas Heart Institute.

“An accurate, automated (operator-independent), and inexpensive method of monitoring endothelial function for clinical practice can make as great an impact on today’s medicine as automated blood pressure monitoring devices have done for blood pressure monitoring in the past decade,” said Dr. Michael Jamieson, who sits on Endothelix’s Advisory Board.

“This licensing and the resulting partnership among the University of Texas Houston Health Science Center, Texas Heart Institute and Endothelix is great news for Houston, since it indicates that the Texas Medical Center’s institutions are truly committed to the commercialization of their technologies by local startups”, said Charles Powell, a partner at Haynes and Boone (the law firm that represented Endothelix in the licensing agreement) and a member of the Houston Angel Network (HAN).

For more information about Endothelix visit http://www.endothelix.com or contact Craig Jamieson, at (713) 529-2599

About Endothelix:

Endothelix focuses on the prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in apparently healthy individuals and monitoring responses to therapy in cardiovascular patients. More than 70 million Americans have CVD (source: American Heart Association), yet a majority of these individuals are unaware of this condition. Vascular endothelial dysfunction is a well-known precursor and marker of CVD.

Endothelix is a Delaware corporation based in Houston, Texas and was formed in December 2003. The company is dedicated to promoting vascular endothelial health. The company’s products are intended to help practicing physicians to regularly monitor their patient’s endothelial function and to use appropriate therapies for treatment of endothelial dysfunction. The initial focus of the company is to bring endothelial function measurement to the mainstream practice of medicine, in a low-cost widely reproducible manner. The immediate application of the company’s first line of product is tailored to cardiovascular healthcare particularly for prevention of heart attack and stroke. The base model of VENDYS™ works by inflating a cuff around the upper arm for two to five minutes, followed by immediate deflation while the VENDYS™ thermosensors continuously monitor temperature changes at one or more points distal to the cuff (usually at the index fingertip).

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Craig Jamieson
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