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This article was prepared for the May 18, 2005 issue of U.S. 1

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Stent Technology from Rutgers

Stents are an important part of the business plan for another firm at

Princeton Corporate Plaza, TyRx Pharma, which focuses on polymers that

attach the drug to the device. Based on the work of Satish Pulapura,

done in the lab of Joachim Kohn at Rutgers University, TyRx was

founded in 1998 to use polymers for medical devices and pharmaceutical

products, and it opened a 7,200 square foot, 15-person lab on Deer

Park Drive last year. In addition to developing its own products, it

plans to get cash flow from licensing its technology to corporate


TyRx will be featured at an invitation-only technology transfer

workshop at Rutgers’ Busch Campus in Piscataway on Thursday, May 26,

for member companies of the New Jersey Center for Biomaterials. (For

an invitation, call 732-445-0488).

TyRx got started when Arikha Moses, a venture capitalist with Athena

Ventures, came across Kohn’s technology – tyrosine-based resorbable

polymers that are non-toxic. Moses founded the firm and was its first

president; now she is the chief scientific officer at TyRx. CEO

William Edelman joined the firm in January, 2004.

One TyRx product is being developed with Boston Scientific, and other

families of products are being worked on internally. "We are a

potential candidate to provide the biodegradable coating that can be

used in the DES that Boston Scientific has on the market," says CEO

William Edelman. "Our objective is to take our internal products

through FDA filing this year and market them in 2006."

TyRx also aims to use its polymer coatings in cardiac rhythm

management and surgical barrier protections. When applied to devices

such as pacemakers, they can help deal with complications that could

follow an implantation. That’s because the polymer degrades over time,

and so the drug is released slowly.

"We have a very broad platform of polymers that can deliver small as

well as large molecules, up to proteins and we can release them in a

very controlled way," says Edelman. "We can engineer the polymer to

tune its performance for specific requirements."

The son of an industrial engineer in the garment industry, Edelman was

a biomedical engineer at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Class of

1978, and has received or has applied for a total of 16 patents. He

has worked on angioplasty products for Pfizer and St. Jude, and he has

been a consultant to the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and an Israeli

venture-backed medical device start-up. He was CEO for NeuroMod Inc.,

a venture-backed start-up focused on neurostimulation for chronic

disease treatment, and president of FibraSonics, an ultrasonic

surgical products company that was successfully sold four years ago.

He sold his most recent company, a glucose detection firm named

MicroSense, to Becton Dickinson & Company in 2003. At that point one

of the investors in this firm recommended him for the CEO’s job at


TyRx Pharma’s investors include Boston Scientific, Cahn Medical

Technologies LLC, and Boston-based Angel Health Investors. Amper

Politzner Mattia on Alexander Road does the corporate audits, and

attorneys include Brown Rudnick in Boston and Eisner LLC in Manhattan;

Monmouth Telecom is the website provider.

The research center includes faculty members at Rutgers, the

University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and the New Jersey

Institute of Technology. It is supported by annual dues from two dozen

member companies, federal grants, and income from specific studies.

Edelman projects that the first products will be sold in "a couple of

years." Earlier this year TyRx had a dozen employees; now it has 18

and expects to have 24 in 2006. "We want to take advantage of the

location to hire additional talent," says Edelman.

-Barbara Fox

TyRx Pharma Inc., 1 Deer Park Drive, Princeton Corporate Plaza, Suite

G, Monmouth Junction 08852. William Edelman, 732-246-8676; fax,

732-246-8677. Home Page

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