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SmartTRAK Life Sciences News and Analysis Blog

3 min read

Polaroid Therapeutics: Start-Up Spotlight

By Kris Flinn on 4/12/24 10:42 AM

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) was directly responsible for 1.27 million deaths worldwide in 2019, according to the World Health Organization. With AMR now seen as a top global health concern and COVID-19 still in recent memory, the challenge of overcoming infections appropriately and effectively exists in all areas of healthcare and beyond. This includes wound care, with SmartTRAK forecasting that the WW antimicrobial market will exceed $1.00B for the first time in 2024.

One company aiming to tackle the challenge in antimicrobial therapies is Swiss-based Polaroid Therapeutics. The company has developed a proprietary advanced polymer technology that is designed to reduce bio-burden in a variety of settings, including in wound management. SmartTRAK recently caught up with CEO and co-founder Ran Frenkel to discuss the journey that the company has been on. Click on the video below to listen to the interview (15:01 min). A link to download the transcript of the interview is also provided below.

Download the Transcript

SmartTRAK: This is Kris Flinn with SmartTRAK. Today, I'm joined by Ran Frenkel, CEO and co-founder of Polaroid Therapeutics. Polaroid Therapeutics is a Swiss-based biotech startup focused on the development of innovative antimicrobial technology. The company has developed a proprietary advanced polymer technology that is designed to reduce bio-burden in a variety of settings, including in wound management. Ran, thank you for joining us today. Could you please start by giving me some background on yourself?

Ran Frenkel: Hi, Kris. Thanks. Happy to be here. I'm a pharmacist by training. For the last 25 years, I have been working in the pharmaceutical industry in different kinds of management positions in drug discovery and drug development. For the last 11 years, I was the Chief Development Officer of an oncology company here in the US, where we developed a first-in-class new drug for blood cancers, which was approved in over 50 countries. For the last two years, nearly two years, I joined Polaroid Therapeutics, moving from the oncology space into more of the antibacterials and wound management space.

Fantastic. So, Polaroid is a name that many people will recognize, but could you tell me a little about Polaroid Therapeutics specifically and the journey that the company's been on?

RF: Yeah, and it's a very nice story because everyone is familiar with ...

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3 min read

Spine Market Movers to Watch in 2024

By Kris Jacques on 4/9/24 9:30 AM

SmartTRAK highlights companies to watch as they continue their double-digit growth train with multiple catalysts for expansion in 2024.

Overall, the US Spine Market had a remarkable year in 2023 with the completion of the Globus/NuVasive (GMED) merger creating a new #2 in Spine, displacing the incumbent DePuy Synthes (JNJ). SmartTRAK estimates the US Spine Hardware Market grew ~5.5% in 2023. However, many pure-play spine companies exceeded industry growth with exceptional, double-digit growth rates in 2023, while others approached the $100MM revenue milestone. In this article, SmartTRAK highlights five pure-play spine companies to watch and the catalysts driving their expansion in 2024.

Continued Double-Digit Growth in 2024

SmartTRAK  expects three spine companies to see continued double-digit growth in 2024, particularly based on competitive moats developing and the ability to execute in their respective purviews, They are:
  • Alphatec Spine: Expanding Its Competitive Moat in Lateral Procedures
    • Alphatec has grown double digits yearly over the last five years. ATEC is now the #1 pure-play Spine Market leader and #5 in the overall Spine Market. These market share gains can be attributed to ... (read more)
  • SI-Bone: Competition Will Test the SI Fusion Market Leader in 2024
    • SI-Bone has grown double digits over the past three years. SIBN is the market leader in minimally invasive spine (MIS) SI Fusion with over 55% market share in the SI Fusion Market and more than ... (read more)
  • Centinel Spine: Fastest Growing Spine Company in 2023
    • In 2023, Centinel Spine was the fastest-growing spine company in one of the fastest-growing areas in spine, motion preservation. Centinel Spine reported record worldwide total disc replacement (TDR) revenue of nearly ... (read more)

Companies Closing in on $100MM in 2024

Both Spinal Elements and Xtant Medical came close to reaching the $100MM revenue mark in 2023 and SmartTRAK expects both to reach that lofty milestone in 2024. 

  • Spinal Elements: Focus on MIS Innovation, the Aging Spine and ASCs
    • Spinal Elements was just shy of $100MM in revenues in 2023. The company is focused on some of the fastest-growing trends in spine including ... (read more)
  • Xtant Medical:  Integrated Hardware, Biologics and More Acquisitions
    • Xtant Medical (XTNT) is also closing in on the $100MM revenue mark, growing +54.5% over 2022. XTNT had an exciting year of acquisition activity, including ... (read more)

To download the complete "Spine Market Movers to Watch in 2024" article by SmartTRAK's  Kris Jacques, please just click the button below. Read the Article

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4 min read

Swedish Wound Care Companies – You Win Some, You Lose Some

By Lennart Stadler on 4/2/24 9:30 AM

It is difficult to make it as a small to midsize company in the Global Wound Care Market, which was painfully evident for a few Swedish companies in the fall of 2023. SmartTRAK looks at lessons learned and explains why the future is still bright.

Sweden is traditionally a great place to start a wound care company. Several established global leaders are based there, like Mölnlycke*, Essity* and Arjo*. They fund early-stage companies and act as a source of skilled personnel. Strong universities and leading pharma and medical device companies also contribute to a dynamic market.

In the fall of 2023, not one, not two, but three Swedish companies found themselves in deep trouble. RLS Global filed for bankruptcy, Promore Pharma was liquidated and S2Medical was under reconstruction. In this article, SmartTRAK looks deeper at those companies, what went wrong, and highlights a few startups embarking on the journey. Lessons learned are not limited to the Swedish market but apply everywhere.

The companies covered in detail in this comprehensive Market Perspective article, which can be downloaded in its entiretyhere, are:

Although the fall of 2023 was challenging for a few companies, the future looks bright for Sweden to maintain its position as a strong generator of ...

* These links can only be accessed by SmartTRAK subscribers. To learn more            about SmartTRAK and how to subscribe, scroll down.

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3 min read

Highlights in Sports Medicine and Arthroscopy from AAOS 2024

By Andy Knapik on 3/26/24 9:30 AM

SmartTRAK highlights key trends and happenings in sports medicine and arthroscopy at AAOS 2024.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) convened this year in San Francisco, California, from February 12-16. Following several years of subdued participation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, last year's strong showing at AAOS in Las Vegas fostered expectations for a continuation of momentum this year. Despite lower-than-projected attendance from medical professionals, the event featured a robust presence of large and small companies presenting their products and services. So, what was the buzz at the meeting?

In this Perspective article, which can be downloaded here, SmartTRAK highlights key takeaways from AAOS for companies competing in the Sports Medicine Market, including the following topics:

  • Continued Interest in Biologic-driven Soft Tissue Fixation
    Companies are still helping drive soft tissue fixation sales through the use of biologics, which now are key advancements in technology at the forefront of sports medicine surgical procedures. Smith+Nephew continues to drive its Sports Medicine business with ... (read more)

  • Ongoing Focus on the ASC Market
    Companies at AAOS had a prominent focus on the Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) Market. According to the SmartTRAK US Ortho ASC Market Overview, as of 2022, there were over ... (read more)

  • Developments in Arthroscopic Technologies
    Another common theme on display across the AAOS 2024 exhibit floor was the showcasing of surgical video technologies. All the big players in sports medicine had their video systems on display, and some notable systems stood out. Stryker highlighted its newest ... (read more)

To download and read the complete "Highlights in Sports Medicine and Arthroscopy from AAOS 2024" Perspective article by Andy Knapik, SmartTRAK Senior Analyst, Soft Tissue Fixation and Arthroscopic Enabling Technologies, just click the button below. Read the Article

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3 min read

Route 92 Medical: Raising the Bar in Neurovascular Thrombectomy

By Anne Staylor on 3/19/24 9:30 AM

Adam Hattan, VP of marketing for Route 92 Medical, discusses the SUMMIT MAX trial and provides an update on the company and products in an interview with SmartTRAK.

Route 92 Medical (R92) is raising the bar and advancing the treatment of acute ischemic stroke through its 250-patient SUMMIT MAX clinical trial, the first randomized controlled trial to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of “super-bore” 0.088” aspiration catheters. The company recently announced enrollment is complete in SUMMIT MAX, which features the company’s Monopoint Reperfusion System, including the HiPoint 88 and HiPoint 70 Reperfusion Catheters and the Tenzing Catheters. HiPoint is currently approved by the FDA as an access catheter, but the company plans to submit the results of SUMMIT MAX to the FDA to obtain the NRY indication, which would allow physicians to use the device on label as an aspiration catheter.

For an update on R92, its products and what SUMMIT​ MAX means for the company and market, SmartTRAK interviewed Adam Hattan, R92’s vice president of marketing. Click on the video below to listen to the interview, recorded via Google Meet (19:48 min). A link to download the complete transcript of the interview is also provided below.

Download the Adam Hattan Interview Transcript

Topics: Neurovascular
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8 min read

SmartTRAK Insights from the 2024 AAOS/CG Musculoskeletal Conferences

By Elise Wolf on 3/15/24 9:30 AM

SmartTRAK experts across orthopedics, sports medicine, spine and enabling technology attended this year’s 2024 Canaccord Genuity Musculoskeletal and American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) annual conferences. Held from February 12-15 in San Francisco, CA, these gatherings brought together the top minds in the industry. In this post, we share some key insights and updates gleaned from these conferences, offering a glimpse into the latest trends and innovations shaping the future of orthopedic and musculoskeletal care.


Maxx Orthopedics*
learned at AAOS 2024 that Maxx Medical is going on the offensive to grow its joint replacement business in the US and that the Company plans to launch new hip and knee products in 2024.

Paragon 28*
At AAOS 2024, Paragon 28 noted that its supply chain issues have resolved and does not expect a headwind this year. As a result, Needham believes the company can return to ~20% revenue growth in 2024.

Restor3d reported it currently has 157 active distribution partners calling on ~22,965 orthopedic surgeons and ~18,000 podiatrists. Management noted surgeons will bring difficult cases and from there restor3d can create additional sales opportunities. CG 2024 Musculoskeletal Conference


BONESUPPORT highlighted the continued strength of Cerament G in North America with approximate revenues of $17.0MM in Q323 since launching in June 2023. CG 2024 Musculoskeletal Conference

At AAOS 2024, SmartTRAK learned that OrthAlign’s 2023 revenue was up +25% to $51MM, led by strong adoption of its Lantern next-generation handheld navigation system and increasing use of the Balance gap balancing feature on Lantern Knee. The company noted +37% growth in the ASC setting.

Find out how to receive SmartTRAK Daily Updates in your morning email

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3 min read

Desert Foot 2023: Caring for Patients with DFUs

By Susan Paquette on 3/12/24 9:30 AM

Established and innovative new biologic products share space at Desert Foot 2023.

The diabetic population in the US continues to rise, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimating that ~11.3% of US adults will be diagnosed with diabetes in 2021, the vast majority having Type II. The number of diabetics is even higher in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), where one in four (25%) has diabetes, according to recent statistics published in VA News.

According to the Mayo Clinic, Type II diabetes can eventually lead to high blood sugar levels, which can cause disorders of the circulatory, nervous and immune systems. One ailment that often arises with diabetes is the occurrence of a diabetic foot ulcer (DFU) due to poor blood flow and neuropathy that many of these patients experience. The prevalence of a DFU varies with age, ranging from two percent in younger adults to eight percent in adults 65 and older.

In this article, which can be downloaded here, SmartTRAK reports on:

  • Skin Substitute Market Leaders at Desert Foot
    • Four of the top five US skin substitute/ CTP companies had a strong presence at the meeting. They were ... (read more)

  • Companies and innovations that caught SmartTRAK’s attention, including:
    • MicroVascular Tissues (MVT) - Featured mVASC, an off-the-shelf human tissue allograft consisting of ... (read more)
    • Fidia US - Showcased its newly launched Wound Care line of products, including ... (read more)
    • Merakris Therapeutics - Provides Dermacyte Amniotic Wound Care Matrix (Dermacyte Matrix) to the market as a skin substitute. However, at Desert Foot, the company discussed its ongoing clinical trial to investigate ... (read more)
    • Omeza - Presented its unique Omeza Complete Matrix (OCM) product and started the presentation by stating, “Omeza is not a Collagen Dressing or Product!! OCM is not a Dressing.” The company described OCM as ... (read more)

      To download and read the complete "Desert Foot 2024" article by Susan Paquette, SmartTRAK VP & General Manager, Wound, just click the button below.
      Read the Article
Topics: Wound Care
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3 min read

What Impact will GLP-1 Agonists have on Chronic Wounds?

By Kris Flinn on 3/5/24 2:24 PM

With many believing that GLP-1 agonists should be considered a “wonder drug,” SmartTRAK explores what impact their use could have on the market for wound care.

S martTRAK  estimates  that there were 77.7MM chronic wounds worldwide (US, Europe, Japan, Australia, Canada, Brazil, China and India) in 2022, of which 41.4MM were hard-to-heal. Wound numbers are forecast to grow at a five-year CAGR of +0.8%, which is higher than the forecasted population growth of +0.3% but below the growth of those aged over 65 years old.
In this article, SmartTRAK provides an overview of GLP-1 agonists, explores the possible impact these drugs will have on the conditions that drive wound prevalence and advises on how the outcomes will influence future estimates.
Among the topics covered in this article are:
  • What are GLP-1 Agonists?
    GLP-1 agonists are a class of drugs mimicking the action of a hormone called glucagon-like peptide 1. The drugs stimulate glucose-dependent insulin release from the pancreas. A range of agonists have been developed and launched, with the first product being ... (read more)

  • What is the Future for GLP-1 Agonists?
    Financial indicators suggest that GLP-1 agonists are expected to expand significantly in use around the world. The two companies with drugs licensed for weight loss have seen record share price growth are ... (read more)

  • What Impact Are GLP-1 Agonists Expected to Have on Diabetes and Obesity?
    When GLP-1 agonists were launched in 2005, they required twice daily injections. This was driven by the rapid elimination, or short half-life, of the compounds. With further development, companies have improved usability and weekly injections and ... (read more)
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3 min read

Extremities Outlook for 2024

By Lisa Mahan on 2/27/24 9:30 AM

SmartTRAK takes a look at the trends impacting the Extremities Market in 2024 and beyond.

SmartTRAK provides comprehensive insights into the key trends shaping the US Extremities Market, with a particular focus on upper extremities and foot & ankle sectors. Reimbursement changes, the competitive landscape of robotics and innovative advancements in fixation technologies are poised to dominate discussions, underscoring the dynamic evolution of this market segment.

Among the many topics covered in detail in this market outlook article are:

  • CMS Reimbursement Changes Accelerate Shift to Arthroplasty Site-of-Care
    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) move to reimburse shoulder replacement and ankle replacement in an ambulatory surgery center (ASC) setting will accelerate the move of procedures to ... (read more)

  • An Increase in Pricing Pressure from the Shift to Shoulder ASC Procedures
    The national average CMS facility reimbursement in 2024 for total shoulder arthroplasty in an ASC is approximately $14K, significantly lower than for hospital-based procedures in the range of ... (read more)

  • The Race is on for Shoulder Robotics
    Stryker and Zimmer Biomet appear to be racing to the finish line to be the first to market in the US with a shoulder robotics solution. During Zimmer Biomet’s Q323 earnings call, CEO Ivan Tornos stated they plan to be first on ... (read more)
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3 min read

Advanced Wound Dressings: 2024 Market Outlook

By Lennart Stadler on 2/20/24 9:30 AM

From OEM manufacturers getting dressings approved in the US to pressure injury prevention focus - SmartTRAK takes a closer look at what to keep an eye on in 2024.

SmartTRAK forecasts the WW Advanced Wound Dressing Market will grow at a 5-year CAGR of +5.2%. The market grew +5.2% in Q323 and +5.6% in the first three quarters of 2023. Advanced Wound Dressings is a market spread relatively evenly across geographies, with Europe currently representing a 44.1% share of the 2023 worldwide (WW) market, the US representing 27.9% and the ROW 28.0%.

Looking ahead, SmartTRAK sees three trends continuing in 2024. They are:

  • Growing Use of OEM Manufacturers in the US
    In the US, most dressings require 510(k) clearance by the FDA. A strong trend in recent years is that original equipment manufacturer (OEM) providers have been getting their products approved for sale in the US and then ... (read more)

  • Major Players Investing in Infrastructure
    Another trend of interest is more activity than usual from leading companies investing in infrastructure. SmartTRAK examines recent events and the potential drivers behind those decisions ... (read more)

  • Growth in Dressings for Pressure Injury Prevention
    SmartTRAK expects the use of dressings for pressure injury prevention to be a key growth driver in the Advanced Wound Dressing Market in the coming years. The trend is supported by an increasing body of evidence indicating that ... (read more)

SmartTRAK has developed an in-depth analysis of the pressure injury prevention market, including the market size for the US, Europe, and the rest of the world (ROW), five-year forward forecasts, clinical and laboratory evidence, key drivers of market growth, and product technologies and claims. To find out more, please click here.

To download and read the complete "Advanced Wound Dressings: 2024 Market Outlook" by Lennart Stadler, SmartTRAK GM, OUS & Sr. Analyst, Wound and Anikó Szekér, SmartTRAK Sr. Analyst, Wound, just click the button below. Read the Article

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