Appointment Of Chas Taylor
A Cardiff-based MedTech company has attracted a leading medical devices entrepreneur to its board.
Chas Taylor has been appointed as Chairman at Ceryx Medical, the business behind a revolutionary technology that could change the way patients with serious heart problems are treated. Taylor brings with him decades of experience in developing and leading medical device companies. These include three international cardiovascular businesses – MedNova, Novate and Veryan. Taylor founded and exited each of these businesses, raising over £100m in capital during the process.
His appointment comes at a crucial time for Ceryx Medical, which is preparing for first-in-man trials of its cardiac rhythm management device. The scientists behind the invention believe it holds the key not just to increasing the heart’s efficiency, but also to enabling it to repair itself.
Dr Stuart Plant, Ceryx Medical’s Chief Executive Officer, said “Our device is along the lines of a traditional cardiac pacemaker, but its capabilities have been massively enhanced by our revolutionary microchip technology. It essentially helps the heart and lungs work together to improve blood flow and alleviate patients’ symptoms. Even patients with life-limiting heart failure could find that their condition significantly improves. We’re seeing that our device can actually undo damage that has been caused to the heart.”
Twenty million people in Europe and the US are currently living with heart failure, and it has for some time been the number-one cause of hospitalisation in the over-65s. Heart failure happens when the heart can no longer supply all the blood the body needs. This might follow a heart attack, an infection, or chronic hypertension. Once heart failure strikes, it is extremely difficult to prevent the disease progressing, and fifty per cent of patients will die within five years of diagnosis.
Ceryx Medical’s technology is unique in its ability to alleviate the debilitating symptoms of heart failure while simultaneously giving the heart the opportunity to repair itself. The company spun-out of Bath and Bristol Universities and continued development of the technology in collaboration with Auckland University in New Zealand. It has undergone five years of rigorous laboratory testing and pre-clinical evaluations and is scheduled to be trialed in humans later this year.
“This is a hugely exciting time for us, as we near the final and most important pre-commercialisation stage of our journey,” said Dr Plant. “We know that we have managed to create a genuinely groundbreaking technology and we’re confident that it is set to offer a much brighter outlook for cardiology patients. We also know that our core medical device technology has the potential to treat other conditions, including hypertension and spinal cord injuries, too. So we’re hopeful of a future pipeline of equally revolutionary therapeutic devices. ”
Ceryx Medical’s technology has sparked interest from domestic and overseas markets and has drawn investment from some of the UK’s leading MedTech investors including ParkWalk, and the Development Bank of Wales. The appointment of Chas Taylor is the latest in a series of moves to further build momentum as the company eyes up its markets.
Dr Plant said, “It has been great to see that well-respected people in the MedTech and broader investment world share our vision and are committed to helping get our device out there. We feel that we now have the best possible team in place to get us through the trial phase and to build on the UK and international links we’ve been establishing with prospective buyers.”
Chas Taylor said, “Very few devices have captured my attention in the way this has. The Ceryx technology has the potential to improve cardiac output and enhance cardiac repair in heart failure patients. Stuart and the team have done an exceptional job so far, and I’m delighted to be associated with this exciting project.”
Dr. Richard Thompson from the Development Banks Technology Ventures Team added : “The appointment of Chas as Chairman of Ceryx is a reflection of just how impressive this company is and his belief in the revolutionary technology that the team are developing. We are delighted to welcome him to the team and look forward to working with him and the Board in preparing for this pivotal trial.”
Established in 2016, Ceryx Medical plans to recruit and to expand into new office and lab space in central Cardiff, as it works with partners to develop and launch its cardiac rhythm management device.