ZEON Medical Inc. (Shuwa Shiba Park Building, 2-4-1 Shiba Kohen, Minato-ku, Tokyo; President: Toshikazu Onuki), concluded a contract on December 17, 2003 to acquire the exclusive sales rights in Japan for the CardioPath™ System, an aspiration atherectomy device for treating lesions due to coronary artery blockage, developed by the U.S. venture company, Pathway Medical Technologies, Inc. (WA, U.S.A). ZEON Medical plans to conduct clinical trials in fiscal 2004 toward launching sales of the product in 2007.The CardioPath™ System developed by Pathway Medical Technologies, Inc. is a catheter system that removes obstructions and reopens blood vessels using an end-mounted rotating blade that can alter the vessel diameter in two stages in the course of coronary intervention procedures (low-invasive procedures for treating blocked coronary arteries by inserting a catheter and other devices through, for example, a femoral artery). This unique, next-generation atherectomy device not only reopens disrupted blood flow but also provides safe treatment by aspirating and collecting diseased inelastic material to prevent the clogging of peripheral vessels ("atherectomy device" refers to a device that clears and removes intravascular obstructions in order to reperfuse coronary arteries). Since this system is easily set up and can effectively treat a wide range of lesions, from hard, calcified intravascular lesions to soft lesions, including blockage caused by thrombus, it is expected to have broad applicability.
ZEON Medical, a wholly owned subsidiary of ZEON Corporation (2-6-1 Marunouchi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President & CEO: Naozumi Furukawa), has an outstanding record of achievement in the development of circulatory system products, including development of the world's first ventricular artificial hearts and IABP (intra-aortic balloon pumping). The company has recently been expanding into fields related to coronary interventions, including the development and sales of the PTCA balloon catheter, which treats coronary lesions with a small balloon. Furthermore, for the promotion of sales, ZEON Medical is also supporting the development of specialists in this field and working to fully comprehend the demands of doctors, and needs of the market, by staying in close contact with actual medical procedures.