Effectively a materials firm, Ranier has developed CAdisc for the purpose of replacing diseased spinal discs and relieving chronic back pain – a market expected to be worth $1.4 billion worldwide, by 2010. The company claims its product, first launched in July 2003, ‘is unique in that it is an elastomeric device, which mimics and restores the physiological properties and bio-mechanics of the natural spinal disc’.
To Peter Wolfers of FNI (the UK arm of German firm Renate Nixdorf) CAdisc stands a strong chance of securing its share of this growing market. ‘[It] is a very promising device,’ he explains, ‘backed by strong intellectual property and technology and we are confident the development programme will lead to a new standard of treatment for total disc replacement.’ FNI has been involved with Ranier since its first funding round in 2002.
In addition to spinal discs, Ranier is also investigating additional uses for its biomaterial technologies, with urinary catheters, condoms and medical gloves all under development.