Galway medtech’s device to treat colorectal condition granted US patent

3 Apr 2023

Moshe Zilversmit, Signum Surgical; Mark Regan, consultant colorectal surgeon at University Hospital Galway; and Eoin Bambury, Signum Surgical. Image: Johnny Bambury

Last year, Signum Surgical raised €2.9m to commercialise the BioHealx device. The tech has now been patented in the US.

Galway-based medical device company, Signum Surgical, has been granted a new patent in the US covering its BioHealx tech. The patent was granted to the company by the US Patent Office.

BioHealx is a device that was developed by the company in collaboration with colorectal surgeons. It helps surgeons to treat a condition called anal fistula, which is a painful condition that affects one in 5,000 people worldwide.

At the moment, patients with the condition are often required to have surgery. Often, these surgeries and other treatment options can be unsuccessful, leading to poor healing. Patients risk incontinence and repeat procedures due to the lack of non-invasive treatments.

BioHealx is a single-use, bioabsorbable implant that is designed to dissolve in a person’s body after treatment. It is administered to the patient via a minimally invasive outpatient procedure.

Its single-operation approach aims to protect a person’s continence, as well as prevent reinfection and promote healing.

The tech has the potential to eliminate the need for multiple surgeries, which could substantially reduce surgical trauma and healing time. It can also reduce costs, both for the patient and the healthcare system.

The BioHealx device on a white background.

BioHealx. Image: Johnny Bambury

The recognition of Signum Surgical’s BioHealx device by the US Patent Office is a major coup for the company, which was founded in 2016 as a spin-out of National University of Ireland’s BioInnovate programme.

The company’s global intellectual property portfolio consists of 35 patents, including five issued US patents owned or under license.

“We are pleased to receive another US patent covering our innovative BioHealx technology which is focused on the treatment of anal fistula,” said Moshe Zilversmit, co-founder and CEO of Signum Surgical.

“Our growing IP portfolio is a key asset for future development and bringing this technology to market. BioHealx has the potential to transform the lives of patients suffering from this debilitating condition.”

Last year, Signum Surgical raised €2.9m to commercialise the BioHealx device. The round was led by the medtech syndicate of the Halo Business Angel Network, which is an initiative co-run by Enterprise Ireland.

Prior to that fundraise, Signum Surgical raised funds via grant funding from the EU’s Horizon 2020, as well as from the Irish Government’s Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund.

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Blathnaid O’Dea was a Careers reporter at Silicon Republic until 2024.