TriStar Technology Ventures, the West End-based venture capital fund focused on healthcare and life sciences, has invested in California-based Cerebrotech Medical Systems.
A nearly $3 Million equity capital-raising effort is reported in an SEC filing this week. TriStar principals and co-founders Christopher Rand and Brian Laden, Ph.D., are among those associated with the raise.
Cerebrotech President Mitch Levinson, contacted by VNC, would say only that the proceeds of the raise will be used for "continued product development and clinical validation." The product is useful in monitoring patients who have experienced a stroke or traumatic brain injury, according to Levinson's Linkedin profile.
TriStar's Rand told VNC he could add little to what Levinson said, but noted that Cerebrotech's technology originated at University of California-Berkeley, thereby reaffirming TriStar's assertion at its founding that it would seek such opportunities among diverse research institutions. TriStar's investment is not from its TNInvestco fund, Rand noted.
A November 2011 report by the Mercury News, which Levinson today acknowledged remains accurate, said, in part, that Cerebrotech's offerings were in clinical trials and are designed to "non-invasively monitor the fluid levels of a patient's brain after a stroke, traumatic brain injury, or after brain surgery."
Levinson was further quoted as saying the device was, at that time, akin to an athletic headband, with sensors to monitor changes in fluids that might reveal bleeding or edema. The newstory seemed to suggest that using the Cerebrotech device could provide quicker reports of fluid changes than might be revealed by a CT scan or an MRI, allowing medical staff to be alerted, sooner.
Levinson is the former founding CEO of venture-capital backed Zeltiq, which created technologies to reduce bulges of patients' superficial fat tissue. Zeltiq eventually went public and had a market cap of $425MM in October 2011, according to Levinson's profile.
TriStar's third co-founder is Harry Jacobson, M.D., the former health affairs vice chancellor of Vanderbilt University and its Medical Center, and chairman of MedCare, a private-equity fund, among other financial and entrepreneurial roles previously reported by VNC. VNC