In September, 4Tech reported that its TriCinch TTVR device was used in the world’s first-ever successful transcatheter tricuspid valve repair without use of transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) or general anesthesia to successfully treat a patient suffering from tricuspid regurgitation (TR), which afflicts more than 3 million patients in the United States and Europe, making the potential TR patient population approximately two-thirds the size of the MR (mitral regurgitation) patient population. The TriCinch implant took less than one hour and allowed substantial reduction of TR from a grade of 4+ (most severe cases) down to 2 (mild).
“We are extremely pleased to have Bill Hawkins join the 4Tech board of directors,” said Carine Schorochoff, CEO of 4Tech. “Bill has enormous credibility and tremendous experience in the medical device industry. I personally look forward to his participation as we continue to establish TriCinch as a simple and reproducible percutaneous solution to reduce tricuspid regurgitation and restore patient quality of life.”
Among current board memberships and appointments, Hawkins is a trustee of Duke University; vice chairman of Duke University Health System; chairman of Bioventus; lead director at Immucor; director of Halyard, Trice Medical, Baebies; and, a member of the Arboretum Ventures and HealthQuest Technical Advisory boards. He was recently inducted into the National Academy of Engineering. His previous board positions included AdvaMed (Advanced Medical Technology Association); U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Executive in Residence; trustee of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business; and founder and past chairman of Medical Device Innovation Consortium (MDIC), the first-ever public-private partnership between industry and the FDA created to advance medical device regulatory science.
“Bill Hawkins is the embodiment of leadership in the medtech industry and will be invaluable in assisting 4Tech’s progress toward establishing the clinical validation and subsequent commercial success of TriCinch,” said Jan Pensaert, CEO of Valiance (London) and a director of 4Tech.
Hawkins earned a degree in biomedical engineering at Duke University and an MBA degree at University of Virginia—Darden Graduate School of Business Administration.
“Bill Hawkins' track record as a forward-thinking, high-integrity leader of the medical device industry is stellar, and we are extremely excited to have him join us,” added Ben Tsai, a partner at Invus Opportunities and a director of 4Tech. "Having Bill join 4Tech as chairman is both a testament to, and major accelerant of, the tireless efforts of our talented team to build the category-defining percutaneous solution for tricuspid valve disease."
TR is a difficult-to-manage, age-related disease in which blood “backflows” into the right side of the heart. Today’s standard of care for TR is medical management. Surgical intervention is very high-risk. In-hospital death post-cardiac surgery for isolated TR can be as high as 37 percent, according to industry statistics. TR patients tend to be non-compliant with their medications. Thus, TR and related complications induce substantial healthcare spending due to frequent re-hospitalizations. Furthermore, TR leads to chronic renal failure and end-stage dialysis. The combination of these negative outcomes results in a significant unmet need for an interventional cardiology solution to TR.
4Tech Inc. is incorporated in Delaware, with operations in Galway, Ireland (4Tech Cardio Ltd). 4Tech has developed a proprietary transcatheter solution for the treatment of TR. Because of its unique anchoring and tensioning mechanism, the 4Tech TriCinch System for Transcatheter Tricuspid Valve Repair (TTVR) allows a simple and reproducible percutaneous procedure, designed not only to reduce TR and restore patient quality of life, but also allow substantial potential cost-savings for healthcare systems.