Researchers in Sweden and colleagues in Europe and the U.S. say they've found success with a blood test that screens for 12 biomarkers pointing to an increased likelihood of atrial fibrillation, an abnormal heart rhythm that can cause all kinds of cardiac health risks.
Atrial fibrillation causes uneven blood flow, which results in subtle changes in facial skin color. Researchers were able to use that to diagnose AF patients in a small pilot study by using video of a person's face in conjunction with a software analysis of skin color.
St. Jude Medical is hoping to strengthen its franchise in ablation catheters--thin, flexible wires inserted non-surgically into the heart to treat cardiac arrhythmia. Its FlexAbility irrigated ablation catheter has garnered a CE Mark in Europe, where it has marketed the TactiCath contact-force sensing irrigated ablation catheter since 2012. The company hopes to get FDA approval by year end for both FlexAbility and TactiCath.
Advanced Cardiac Therapeutics closed a new round of equity financing to support development of its innovative ablation catheter for atrial fibrillation.
Medtronic is looking make its device the first to be FDA-approved for long-running atrial fibrillation, shaking off a 2011 setback and kicking-starting enrollment in a new pivotal trial.
Topera Medical picked up FDA clearance for the latest generation of its 3-D Mapping System, a device designed to help diagnose cardiac arrhythmias without invasive surgery.
AtriCure is set to acquire California-based surgical ablation device maker Estech in a deal worth at least $34 million and almost double that amount down the line.
Daiichi Sankyo's atrial fibrillation-treating edoxaban posted promising results in Phase III, matching the stroke-prevention prowess of warfarin with a better safety profile, but the drug may struggle to carve out market share in a cluttered space.
Boston Scientific is ticking closer to judgment day for its much-scrutinized Watchman device, securing an FDA advisory hearing for a stroke-fighting implant that has faced doubts throughout its development.
Patients with atrial fibrillation, a common cardiac arrhythmia, are often at a heightened risk for stroke and other health problems. But researchers in the U.K. and elsewhere believe they have identified a biomarker that can help screen for folks who face a greater likelihood of complications.