HomeFundingDutch medtech startup Xeltis secures €15 million to develop pioneering medical treatments

Dutch medtech startup Xeltis secures €15 million to develop pioneering medical treatments

Xeltis, a Dutch medtech startup, has secured €15 million of fresh investment from Chinese firm, Grand Pharma. The startup is developing medical devices to treat cardiovascular disease and as a result, aims to lessen the incidence of CKD.

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is reported to affect 9% of the population – and its prevalence is growing due to a simultaneous increase in cardiovascular diseases around the world (including diabetes, hypertension and diabetes). CKD is now accounting for more deaths than breast and prostate cancers combined. Traditional hemodialysis is overwhelmed with demand, and patients are now experiencing long waiting times to get access to the treatment they need. 

Xeltis is developing polymer-based restorative devices for cardiovascular treatment. The restorative devices include implantable small diameter blood vessels for hemodialysis vascular access and for coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery and pulmonary heart valves, for which clinical trials are ongoing. The aim is that these devices can provide more durable, transformative treatment options for patients worldwide. 

To develop the product, the Dutch startup has just picked up €15 million in new investment. 

The Funding Agreement

Chinese company, Grand Pharmaceutical Group Ltd (0512.HK), has just committed ​​to investing €15 million in equity and license fees, as a cornerstone funding for its ongoing Series D2 financing round.

The Grand Pharma commitment comprises an equity investment and product license, representing Xeltis’ first commercial deal and its first funding from an Asian company.

The agreement, which focuses mainly on Xeltis’ restorative hemodialysis access device aXess, also involves other new products in the field of hemodialysis developed under the same technology platform. Grand Pharma will also have exclusive rights of development, production and commercialization, as well as pre-emptive negotiation rights for Xeltis’ products developed in other indications in the Greater China region.

Eliane Schutte, Xeltis CEO, commented: “Grand Pharma’s commitment to invest in Xeltis brings global validation of aXess’ commercial potential from one of the largest Chinese life sciences companies, from the country with the largest need of hemodialysis access globally. It confirms the strength of our technology platform and clinical evidence to date, and supports our goal of providing potentially more durable, transformative restorative devices for patients worldwide.”

Xeltis’ investors include venture capital funds EQT Life Sciences, Kurma Partners, VI Partners and Ysios Capital as well as a number of private investors. In 2021, Xeltis secured €15 million financing from the European Investment Bank and €15 million funding from the European Innovation Council Accelerator (EIC) set up by the European Commission.

 Xeltis: Developing the aXess Graft

Founded through the merger of Dutch/Swiss university spin-offs, Xeltis’ flagship product, the aXess Graft is showing promising signs for the treatment of CKD – with the potential to impact millions of lives.

The Xeltis aXess graft is a restorative, synthetic, biocompatible and absorbable electrospun blood vessel for arteriovenous hemodialysis access, over time turning into a living vessel made of the patient’s own tissue. Once implanted, its biocompatible, porous micro-structure gets naturally colonized by the patient’s own tissue, which over time takes over functionality before the original device absorbs in the body. This process is called endogenous tissue restoration (ETR).

aXess combines a potentially longer-lasting and readily available vascular access of suitable dialysis size, turned into a living, a natural graft made of the patient’s own tissue. 

It’s still under clinical trials, but showing promising early data outcomes.

While CKD is a global problem, China is believed to be the country with the largest number of CKD patients in the world, accounting for about 130 million people, of which around 580,000 are currently on hemodialysis. The number of people on hemodialysis in China is projected to increase by 15% in the next five years.

Xeltis’ product, and the additional devices being developed, have the potential to tackle this growing problem and this fresh investment will help fuel these ambitions.  

Grand Pharmaceutical Group CEO, Frank Zho: “Grand Pharma is building interventional diagnosis and treatment platform for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases in China. Xeltis’ aXess device would represent an excellent addition to the scope of our broad portfolio and expected to bring significant clinical impact in China.”

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Patricia Allen
Patricia Allen
is the Head of Content at EU-Startups. With a background in politics, Patricia has a real passion for how shared ideas across communities and cultures can bring new initiatives and innovations for the future. She spends her time bringing you the latest news and updates of startups across Europe, and curating our social media.

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