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Israeli Spine Company Opens Shop in Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Life Science Center (MLSC) has helped Israeli minimally invasive spine company NLT Spine open its first U.S. subsidiary in Dedham, Mass. NLT is headquartered in Kfar Saba, Israel.

NLT Spine is the third Israeli medical device company to announce plans to locate an office or subsidiary in Massachusetts since Governor Deval Patrick’s trade mission to Israel in 2011.

“Establishing the U.S. base of operations in Massachusetts was an easy decision for us,” said Tom Keegan, vice president of business development and U.S. marketing for NLT. “It is an area that is rich with expertise in the life sciences. Logistically, it works well for travel in and out of the U.S. for NLT Spine employees from Israel, and it is an excellent hub for convenient access to the rest of the country.”

NLT plans to hire up to three employees in Massachusetts by the end of 2013. In 2014, the plan is to hire 10 additional employees in Massachusetts, and 10 to 15 independent sales representatives across the United States.

“Our vision is ultimately to revolutionize the spine market and create a shift towards MISS [minimally invasive spine surgery], similar to the way the catheter has revolutionized cardiovascular procedures,” said Didier Toubia, CEO of NLT. “We are very pleased with the positive results from recent clinical experience and we look forward to bringing additional benefits to surgeons and hospitals in the United States.”

NLT Spine makes MISS products for treating degenerative spinal conditions. The company’s Prow Fusion (CE marked and U.S. Food and Drug Administration-cleared) intervertebral body fusion device and the eSpin discectomy tool (CE marked) performed well in clinical use outside the United States, so the company will use the Massachusetts office to commercialize its technology platform states-side.

Through the MLSC, Massachusetts is investing $1 billion over 10 years in the growth of the state’s life- sciences cluster. These investments are being made under the Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative, proposed by Patrick in 2007, and passed by the state legislature and signed into law by the governor in 2008.

“Like many other overseas medtech companies, NLT Spine has found that Massachusetts is the perfect location for establishing a presence in the U.S.,” said Tom Sommer, president of the Massachusetts Medical Device Industry Council. “Our state offers unparalleled access to world-class medical research, a talented workforce and a vibrant supply base able to meet the needs of growing medical technology companies.”

NLT Spine specializes in spine surgery instrumentation and implants for treating degenerative spinal conditions through small surgical incisions.

The MLSC is a quasi-public agency of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts tasked with implementing the Massachusetts Life Sciences Act. The agency’s mission is to create jobs in the life sciences and support vital scientific research that will improve the human condition. This work includes making financial investments in public and private institutions that are advancing life-sciences research, development and commercialization as well as building ties among sectors of the Massachusetts life-sciences community.

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