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University of Iowa News Release

 

June 4, 2007

UI Licensee VIDA Diagnostics Inc. Secures $650,000 In Venture Equity Funding

VIDA Diagnostics Inc., a University of Iowa Research Foundation licensee and leader in medical image analysis software, announced today that it has secured $950,000 in venture equity funding from the Iowa First Capital Fund II via Corridor Management Co.

The company, located at the UI's Technology Innovation Center, will initially receive $650,000 from the fund and have an option for more funding later.

"The investment by the Iowa First Capital Fund, combined with Corridor's management expertise is a critical step in our journey to commercialize our unique lung analysis software," said John Garber, VIDA Diagnostics' chief executive officer. "We are now much better positioned to develop our products and expand our strategic partnerships with lung therapy providers and pharmaceutical companies."

Dennis Wangeman, a partner at Corridor Management along with Jim Nikrant and Mark Drish, said, "VIDA Diagnostics is a unique Iowa success story that has established itself as the definitive source of diagnostic information and therapy planning solutions. We are excited about this opportunity to get involved with VIDA and to help them make a difference for millions of emphysema, lung cancer and asthma patients." Wangeman added that emerging companies in the field of pulmonary medical imaging have taken in $500 million in investment in the past five years.

VIDA Diagnostics (http://www.vidadiagnostics.com) produces and sells diagnostic software solutions based on proprietary technology developed at the UI's Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver School of Medicine and licensed from the UI Research Foundation.

Its main product, Pulmonary Workstation Plus, is installed at leading lung research centers around the world, including the UI, Johns Hopkins, Stanford and the University of British Columbia. VIDA's key applications include measuring and locating emphysema, measuring lung and airway drug reactivity and planning bronchoscopy procedures for device placement and biopsy.

The company was founded in 2004 by four UI faculty members: Eric Hoffman, Ph.D., professor of biomedical engineering, nursing and radiology; Geoffrey McLennan, M.D., professor of internal medicine; Joseph M. Reinhardt, Ph.D., associate professor of biomedical engineering; and Milan Sonka, Ph.D., professor of electrical and computer engineering.

VIDA was named Iowa's Outstanding Startup of the Year at the March 2007 Prometheus Awards, sponsored by the Iowa Technology Association. The National Institutes of Health have awarded four Small Business Innovation Research grants to VIDA over the past four years.

Iowa First Capital Fund II (Limited Partnership) is a venture capital fund located in Cedar Rapids and managed by Corridor Management Co. The fund, composed of 28 investors, was established to focus on investing in business within Iowa. The fund currently has investments in four companies ranging from biomedical to prepaid cell phone distribution to computer programming resources.

The UI Research Foundation and the UI Technology Innovation Center are two of the programs in IOWA Centers for Enterprise, which integrates existing economic development activities at the UI, offers a comprehensive program that promotes economic development and technology transfer, provides assistance to Iowa startups and existing Iowa businesses and communities, and helps the state of Iowa develop a creative, entrepreneurial workforce. IOWA Centers for Enterprise optimizes the flow of University intellectual property into opportunities for licensing, commercialization and business development. For more information, visit http://www.enterprise.uiowa.edu/.

STORY SOURCES: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500; VIDA Diagnostics, Inc., 100 Oakdale Campus, #231 TIC, Iowa City, IA 52242; Corridor Management Co., LLC, 222 Third Ave., SE, Suite 12, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401

CONTACTS: Program: John Garber, CEO, VIDA Diagnostics, 319-335-4740, ohngarber@vidadiagnostics.com; Dennis Wangeman, Corridor Management, 319-364-4411; Media: George McCrory, 319-384-0012, george-mccrory@uiowa.edu.