Pentax Medical, a division of the Hoya Group, acquired a controlling interest in PlasmaBiotics this week, an investment that is expected to strengthen Pentax's hygiene portfolio and help it reduce cross-contamination risks associated with endoscopy devices. Paris, France-based PlasmaBiotics makes devices designed for drying and storing endoscopes.
Endoscope hygiene has been a hot-button topic in the gastroenterology sector and FDA has been cracking down on Pentax and other scope makers to make sure these manufacturers are doing sufficient post-market surveillance to assess contamination risks associated with the devices.
Last year Pentax launched the first FDA-cleared disposable distal cap for its ED34-i0T duodenoscope. William Maisel, MD, acting director of the Office of Device Evaluation in FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said disposable distal caps represents a "major step" toward lowering the risk of future infections associated with duodenoscopes used in endoscopy procedures.
PlasmaBiotics' core products include the PlasmaTyphoon, an ultra-fast drying unit for endoscopes, and the PlasmaBag, a single-use device for active storage with plasma. According to the company, these products significantly reduce endoscope reprocessing cycle times and minimize the risk of bacterial contamination. The products also integrate fairly easily into most current endoscope reprocessing protocols, according to Pentax.
“The investment in PlasmaBiotics enables us to provide our customers with an efficient and effective drying and storage solution to address unmet hygiene needs associated with endoscope reprocessing. For duodenoscopes, we have worked to address the hygiene of the Albarran lever and the hoods through our disposable elevator cap and now with PlasmaBiotics we can provide highly innovative technology for the critical step of drying and storing of endoscopes,” said Rainer Burkard, managing director of Pentax Europe and president of Pentax Medical EMEA.
Daniel Vinteler, the founder and CEO of PlasmaBiotics, said joining the Pentax team will give the company the global resources necessary to accelerate and expand its commercialization activities.