North Carolina Firm Puts New Twist on Brachytherapy

CivaTech Oncology, a startup based in Research Triangle Park, NC, that’s developing a device for delivering more consistent radiation to prostate-cancer patients, has raised $800,000 in an oversubscribed private financing.

The funding demonstrates angel investors’ confidence in the firm’s technology, which puts a new twist on brachytherapy. Typically, brachytherapy, a type of radiation treatment for cancer that utilizes implanted radioactive sources to kill tumor cells, surgically implants “seeds.” CivaTech Oncology’s new device will replace these individual seeds with a “radioactive string,” which the company believes should provide more uniform and consistent radiation delivery.

CivaTech is starting with prostate cancer, but its goal is to expand into treating other types of cancer with this form of low-dose-rate brachytherapy. Armed with a U.S. patent for its technology, the company is keeping headcount low while it gathers data for FDA submission. It is turning to consultants to solidify prototyping and testing milestones.

One of the company’s founders, Claudia Black, praised the Research Triangle Park region as a thriving one for medical device firms, in a press release. “The Triangle is poised to get on the map as a center for medical device excellence. Starting and growing a medical device company is less of an exception than it was 10 years ago.”

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