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Thoratec Announces Acquisition of Innovative Catheter-Based Heart Pump Technology
COMPANY WILL INITIATE PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT EFFORT FOR PERCUTANEOUS, ACUTE CARDIAC SUPPORT OFFERING
PLEASANTON, Calif., Jan 25, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Thoratec Corporation (Nasdaq: THOR), a world leader in device-based mechanical circulatory support (MCS) therapies to save, support and restore failing hearts, said today that it has acquired an innovative catheter pump technology that it plans to use in the development of a minimally invasive, acute cardiac axial flow pump that can be delivered percutaneously in the cardiac catheterization lab and operating room.

Thoratec is paying a cash purchase price of $8.5 million to Getinge AB (Stockholm: GETIB) for the technology, which will be recorded as an expense in the first quarter of 2010. The company expects to incur incremental development costs of up to $3 million in 2010. Overall financial guidance for 2010 will be provided during the upcoming fourth quarter earnings call.

"This technology represents a compelling opportunity for Thoratec as we broaden our leadership position in MCS therapies. There is an unmet need for a device that can provide fast and minimally invasive acute cardiac support for hemodynamically unstable acute myocardial infarction, high risk percutaneous coronary intervention and post-cardiotomy patients. Given its potential ability to provide greater flow at a smaller size than other existing devices, we believe this technology offers the potential to be the basis for a breakthrough offering in this very significant market," said Gary F. Burbach, president and chief executive officer of Thoratec.

"We will be using our proven competencies in MCS while adding to our research and development team to advance this product development program. As we move toward expected commercialization in the next several years, we anticipate our clinical, regulatory and market development capabilities will help us achieve regulatory approval and commercial adoption of this technology," he added.

Known as PHP (Percutaneous Heart Pump), the device is an axial flow pump which is inserted through an 11 French introducer sheath that is expandable to 21 French, with an elastomeric, collapsible impeller and cannula that is driven by an external motor via a flexible drive shaft. In a laboratory setting, the device has generated greater than 4.5 liters per minute of flow against normal physiological pressures.

"We already have a very robust product pipeline that includes continued enhancements to our HeartMate II(R) platform, including the recently announced smaller version of the HeartMate II, and our fully magnetically levitated HeartMate(R) III. This transaction provides a unique opportunity to develop a device that complements and expands upon our existing MCS offerings," Burbach said.

Thoratec is a world leader in therapies to address advanced-stage heart failure. The company's product lines include the Thoratec(R) VAD (Ventricular Assist Device) and HeartMate LVAS (Left Ventricular Assist System) with more than 15,000 devices implanted in patients suffering from heart failure. Additionally, its International Technidyne Corporation (ITC) Division is a leader in point-of-care blood testing and skin incision products. Thoratec is headquartered in Pleasanton, California. For more information, visit the company's web sites at http://www.thoratec.com or http://www.itcmed.com.

Thoratec, the Thoratec logo, HeartMate and HeartMate II are registered trademarks of Thoratec Corporation and IVAD is a trademark of Thoratec Corporation. ITC, A-VOX Systems, AVOXimeter, HEMOCHRON, ProTime and IRMA are registered trademarks of International Technidyne Corporation. CentriMag is a registered trademark of Levitronix, LLC.

Many of the preceding paragraphs, particularly but not exclusively those addressing future performance or product development timelines, contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These statements can be identified by the words, "believes," "views," "expects," "anticipates," "plans," "projects," "hopes," "could," "will" and other similar words. Actual results, events or performance could differ materially from these forward-looking statements based on a variety of factors, many of which are beyond Thoratec's control. Therefore, readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on these statements. Investors are cautioned that all such statements involve risks and uncertainties, including risks related to regulatory approvals, the development of new markets and new products, the growth of existing markets for our products, customer and physician acceptance of Thoratec products, changes in the mix of existing markets for our products, the results of enrollment in and timing of clinical trials, the effects of FDA regulatory requirements, and the effects of healthcare reimbursement and coverage polices. Forward-looking statements contained in this press release should be considered in light of these factors, and those factors discussed from time to time on Thoratec's public reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, such as those discussed under the heading, "Risk Factors," in Thoratec's most recent annual report on Form 10-K and in Thoratec's second quarter 2009 quarterly report on Form 10-Q, and as may be updated in subsequent SEC filings. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof. Thoratec undertakes no obligation to publicly release the results of any revisions to these forward-looking statements that may be made to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

SOURCE Thoratec Corporation