A new disposable insulin patch pump, smaller than any pump currently on the market, is in development from SFC Fluidics Inc., a medical device and diagnostics company based in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
The company recently closed a $2 million, Series B investment round that will help it to commercialize the pump, with a footprint of less than two inches in diameter. The battery-powered pump offers high precision, pain-free dosing over a wide range of delivery rates.
SFC Fluidics is a developer of microfluidics devices that enhance the health and well-being of their users by delivering healthcare closer to the patient. Its strategic partner, which led the Series B round, has an impressive track record in the production of FDA-cleared medical devices. This partnership provides SFC with access to FDA-compliant design and manufacturing for its suite of groundbreaking devices.
The low-cost pump potentially can improve the quality of life for millions of insulin-dependent diabetics who manually inject themselves. SFC's insulin pump pod will deliver insulin automatically and without the need for multiple daily self-injections. The pump will last for several days, after which time the entire pod can be thrown away.
SFC will initiate clinical studies in 2015, involving up to 50 patients, to demonstrate the pump's effectiveness. The device is expected to be market ready in 2016.
"Several of our medical devices will enter the market within the next three years," said SFC Fluidics CEO Anthony Cruz. "Having a partner who has manufactured devices in facilities compliant with the FDA and European regulatory agencies can only enhance our success."
Diabetes is a disease affecting roughly 26 million Americans. Roughly 4 million of these suffer from type 2, adult-onset diabetes and are insulin dependent, and these patients represent SFC's initial market.
Insulin is a hormone that helps burn sugar in the blood for fuel. Insulin-dependent diabetics must inject themselves with insulin daily in order to maintain adequate levels of the hormone. Failure to maintain proper injection schedules often results in significant, and sometimes life-threatening, medical complications including irreversible damage to the kidneys, eyes, nerves, heart and major arteries.
Studies reveal that a high percentage of diabetic patients skip insulin injections because the therapy draws too much attention to their illness. Insulin pumps can help patients who are transitioning from oral medications or injections better manage their illness, significantly reducing the long-term effects of diabetes and helping lower health-care costs.
SFC Fluidics, Inc. has unique product lines that span a diverse range of markets including point-of-care diagnostics, analytical instrumentation, and drug delivery. A driving trend in biomedical and analytical instrumentation is toward higher performance, lower operating cost and portability. Our products are based on innovative technologies that improve speed, performance and affordability. The company's mission is to expand scientific knowledge, advance health care, and improve overall quality of life through our enabling microfluidics technologies. SFC Fluidics™ is a VIC Technology Venture Development™ portfolio company.