Medtronic buys Titan Spine in bid to provide the “most comprehensive portfolio”

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Medtronic has completed its acquisition of Titan Spine, which has a range of interbody fusion devices that feature unique surface technology. A press release reports that the acquisition provides opportunities to bundle interbodies, screws, rods, biologics, and “enabling” technologies, such as navigation, to develop “integrated procedural solutions”. It adds that Titan Spine will now become part of Medtronic’s Spine division, which in turn is part of its Restorative Therapies Group.

Titan Spine’s range of “Endoskeleton” interbody fusion devices are coated with either the company’s proprietary nanoLOCK surface technology or with its “original surface” technology. The Titan Spine website reports that the original surface technology was designed to encourage bone growth “by interacting with the patient’s cells to activate their natural bone growth mechanisms”. It adds that the technology “was the breakthrough that sparked the entire surface technology revolution, leading to our proprietary combination of surface textures that altered the interbody fusion landscape forever.” NanoLock, according to the website, was designed to provide “even better” fusion than the original technology “by incorporating a significantly greater amount of the microscopic and nanoscopic features that are found on natural bone”.

Jacob Paul, the senior vice president and president of Medtronic’s Spine division, says that the acquisition of Titan Spine will bring the two companies together to “provide best-in-class solutions for spine surgeons’ biggest challenges.” He adds that Titan Spine has “pioneered the spine implant surface technology category over the past several years”, commenting: “We feel that surface-enhancement titanium implants combined with our comprehensive biologics portfolio can have positive impact on patient outcomes in spinal procedures.”

According to Paul, the acquisition is also part of “an exciting phase of innovation and growth” at Medtronic. He notes that, last year, the company bought Mazor Robotics—a developer of a robot-assisted spinal surgery system. Subsequently, in January this year, Medtronic launched the Mazor X Stealth Edition onto the US market. At the time of the launch, Geoff Martha, executive vice president and president of the Restorative Therapies Group at Medtronic, said: “As part of our surgical synergy strategy, we believe Mazor X Stealth Edition will accelerate the advancement and adoption of robotic-assisted and navigated surgical technologies in spine. Medtronic is committed to transforming the future of spine care by offering procedural solutions that integrate implants, biologics and enabling technologies like navigation, 3D imaging, robotics and powered surgical tools.”

According to a press release, the acquisition of Titan Spine is expected to be “immaterial” to Medtronic’s fiscal 2020 adjusted earnings per share and is also expected to meet Medtronic’s long-term financial metrics for acquisitions. Paul observes that the purchasing of Titan Spine and Mazor Robotics, as well as the launch of its Infinity Spinal System in September 2018, cements the company’s leadership in the spinal market and enables them to offer customers the “most comprehensive portfolio in the spine industry”.

However, Medtronic are not the only major medical device company that have made an investment in the spinal market recently. In June this year, Boston Scientific completed its acquisition of Vertiflex—a company that developed and commercialised the minimally invasive Superion indirect decompression system for the management of lumbar spinal stenosis. Maulik Nanavaty, president, Neuromodulation, Boston Scientific, comments: “The addition of the Vertiflex procedure to our pain management portfolio advances our pain category leadership strategy, while also providing physicians with additional non-opioid pain management solutions that can help improve the lives of the growing number of patients suffering from chronic pain.”

This article is part of a series of BIBA Briefings columns published in Spinal News International. For previous columns, see past issues

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