Tissue signs distribution deals to spread US reach

Antony Odell, MD of Tissue Regenix. Picture by Gerard Binks.
Antony Odell, MD of Tissue Regenix. Picture by Gerard Binks.
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Tissue Regenix, which uses animal and human tissue to replace damaged human body parts, has signed seven regional sales distribution agreements ahead of the launch of its DermaPure brand in the US in early 2014.

York-based Tissue Regenix has high hopes for DermaPure, a human decellularised dermis product that can cure and ease the pain of chronic wounds.

America is a key target market for the company as chronic wounds affect around 6.5 million patients in the US.

The seven agreements with regional distributors will represent over 40 sales representatives who will actively promote DermaPure into acute care hospitals, Veteran Affairs Hospitals and institutions, and Long Term Acute Care hospitals in the US.

The agreements will enable Tissue Regenix to promote DermaPure in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Utah, Montana, New Mexico, Arizona, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Texas, Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, New Jersey, Delaware, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, Maine and New Hampshire.

Over time, Tissue Regenix plans to target all the US states and will sign further distribution agreements to give it sales coverage in all US metropolitan areas by the end of 2014.

It said that DermaPure is on course for its commercial launch in the US during the first three months of 2014.

DermaPure works by taking human donor skin and removing the DNA and cells, using Tissue Regenix’s patented dCELL process to leave a natural biological scaffold that can be placed in the wound to aid natural healing by attracting the patient’s own cells to the wound area.

A recent trial in the UK by NHS Blood and Transplant and the University Hospital of South Manchester was carried out on patients who have suffered from chronic wounds for an average of 4.5 years.

Patients who were treated with a single application of Tissue Regenix’ DermaPure saw an 87 per cent reduction in the size of all wounds, while 60 per cent of patients were completely healed, with virtually no recurrences.

Greg Bila, president of Tissue Regenix Wound Care Inc, said: “We are delighted to have signed these seven regional distribution agreements, allowing us to dispense DermaPure to 25 states in the US.

“These agreements allow us to launch our institutional sales strategy and we are working hard with the distributors to bring the product to market.

“With a significant distribution footprint now in place across the US, we remain steadily on course for the North American commercial launch of DermaPure in 2014.”

Analyst Savvas Neophytou, at Panmure Gordon, said: “This is terrific news, with some 40 new sales representatives ‘engaged’ to detail the company’s dCELL human dermis product DermaPure in the US.

“This should allow a strong entry into the US market with the company having set up very detailed commercialisation plans in this market.

“This allows us to upgrade our price target to 22p (from 18p) and retain our overall ‘buy’ recommendation.”

Tissue Regenix established its US subsidiary Tissue Regenix Wound Care Inc a year ago as part of its commercialisation strategy.

In June this year it signed a processing agreement with Community Tissue Services, one of the largest tissue banks in North America.

Community Tissue Services distributes more than 230,000 grafts for transplant a year.

Tissue Regenix said that the partnerships with Community Tissue Services and the new distribution groups will allow it to target the £860m market for wound healing devices and equip- ment.

This market is expected to reach £900m by 2016.