Rhaeos has announced the successful closing of US$10.5 million in Series A funding, led by the Steele Foundation for Hope, bringing the company’s total funding to more than US$18 million. Other round participants include follow-on investors, Creative Ventures and Lateral Capital.
This funding will be used to support the in-hospital launch of the FlowSense shunt monitor—a wireless, non-invasive thermal sensor that rapidly monitors shunt function in people with hydrocephalus. The funding will also accelerate the development of Rhaeos’ pipeline products, including an at-home version of the FlowSense shunt monitor, and establish a path to better serve people with hydrocephalus in vulnerable communities worldwide, according to a company press release.
Formed out of the John A Rogers Research Group at Northwestern University (Evanston, USA), the novel FlowSense system is designed to rapidly and non-invasively monitor shunt function. It utilises a small, bandage-sized patch that adheres to a person’s skin above the implanted shunt tubing. Critical data on shunt functionality are wirelessly transmitted to a mobile app in a matter of minutes, supporting clinical decision-making to optimise treatment plans, Rhaeos claims.
“Current diagnostic imaging tests used to assess shunt function are limited and can take up to 48 hours, leaving patients with hydrocephalus vulnerable to the damaging effects of excess cerebrospinal fluid on the brain,” said David Limbrick (Washington University School of Medicine/St Louis Children’s Hospital, St Louis, USA). “The FlowSense technology allows me to assess my patients’ shunt function at their bedside in minutes, reducing diagnostic uncertainty and expediting appropriate treatment for people living with this highly complex, chronic condition.”
In 2020, Rhaeos received US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Breakthrough Device designation for the FlowSense shunt monitor, enabling the company to work in close collaboration with the FDA to streamline the market clearance process, and the device is currently being evaluated in an FDA pivotal study across multiple US centres. The company anticipates making the FlowSense shunt monitor commercially available to physicians and their patients in 2023, as per the release.