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Amedica Expands Valeo Spinal Line

Amedica Corp. has added to its Valeo product line.

The new Valeo VBR (vertebral body replacement) spinal implant is intended for vertebral body replacement to aid in surgical correction and stabilization of the thoracolumbar spine and is designed to restore the biomechanical integrity of the spine. The Valeo VBR will employ the unique material characteristics of the company’s proprietary silicon nitride ceramic, which Amedica officials claim may increase fusion potential in corpectomy procedures (a surgical procedure that involves removing part of the vertebral body—corpus vertebrae, hence the name corpectomy—usually as a way to decompress the spinal cord and nerves. Corpectomy is often performed in association with some form of discectomy). The company offers a number of cervical and lumbar spacers as part of its Valeo line.

Amedica is a spinal and reconstructive implant and instrument manufacturer focused on silicon nitride (Si3N4) ceramic technologies.

“We are excited to offer surgeons yet another option for use of our silicon nitride technology. The availability of this product will result in ease of use for surgeons and potentially better outcomes for patients. This is just one of many future applications that we envision for this unique material,” said Eric Olsen, the company’s recently appointed president and CEO.

Amedica’s silicon nitride implants provide a hydrophilic and bone-friendly surface structure that may enhance bone attachment. In addition, the material is fracture resistant and its semi-radiolucent characteristic (easily viewed using standard imaging technology) eases accurate placement.

Olsen also recently told Orthopedic Design & Technology that silicon nitride may have natural antimicrobial properties that the company continues to explore, along with new applications for the ceramic.

Salt Lake City, Utah-based Amedica is a privately held, private equity backed ceramic manufacturing and implant company founded in 1996 by internationally recognized orthopedic surgeons and ceramicists. The company is ISO 13485 certified, its spine products are cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, CE marked in Europe, and sold in ten countries.

In mid-February Amedica completed a recent round of $30 million in financing with the receipt of the final $5,000,000 investment. The proceeds from this financing will be used for further development and distribution of its novel ceramic materials in the orthopedic, spine and dental markets. The proceeds also will be used for payments on debt arising from the U.S. Spine acquisition, and working capital and other corporate purposes. To date, Amedica has raised approximately $140 million.

In September 2010, Amedica acquired privately held U.S. Spine.

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