PRESS RELEASES

Contacts: Anthony G. Viscogliosi, Viscogliosi Bros, LLC (212) 583-9700 ext. 101
Chris Storer, Creative Partners (203) 952-6403

SMALL BONE INNOVATIONS LAUNCHES TISSUE TECHNOLOGY UNIT FEATURING ReFIX™ AND ARTELON® BIOMATERIALS PLATFORMS


NEW YORK – November 22, 2005 - Small Bone Innovations, LLC (SBI) has launched a new business unit to develop and market tissue technology applications designed to repair and restore function to small bones and joints.
 
The unit is launching a newly approved, proprietary line of SBI ReFIX™ bioresorbable fracture fixation screws and pins, following receipt of 510(k) pre-market notification clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
 
In addition, SBI has accelerated its marketing efforts to support the Artelon® CMC-I spacer for treating basal thumb osteoarthritis. The CMC-I spacer is a biodegradable implant that can eliminate the need to remove the trapezial bone and has been shown to restore thumb functionality.
 
ReFIX™ products are built on a bioabsorbable polyester platform that is slowly metabolized by the body, thereby eliminating the need for post-operative removal of the fixation device. The products will compete directly with metal and other polymeric fixation devices used to treat trauma and disease-related indications. These include fixation and/or alignment of apical, osteochondral and cancellous fragments of fractured non-load bearing bones, osteotomies and arthrodeses.
 
Michael J. Simpson, President & COO at SBI said: “In trials, the ReFIX™ system met surgeon needs for optimum precision, speed and flexibility in fixation procedures. A further advantage is the provision of a single instrument set equipped for use with all pin and screw sizes in one set,” he added.
 
The Artelon® CMC-I Spacer is marketed under license from Artimplant, AB, Sweden, and uses a polymeric formulation woven into fabric that can act as a joint spacer while minimizing excessive tissue removal. Use of the material as a spacer received 510(k) pre-market notification clearance from the FDA in September 2004 and is being marketed worldwide through SBI’s global sales force.
 
Terrence O’Donovan, MD, a prominent Baltimore hand surgeon who, in the past six months, has completed the greatest number of Artelon® implants, in the US, says: “The post-operative effect of the spacer on patients has been significant pain reduction and a marked increase in function – or pinch strength. These results are very encouraging although it will require years before reaching any clinical conclusions.”
 
Alejandro Badia, MD, a leading hand surgeon based in Miami, FL, who together with Dr. O’Donovan, conducted a skills workshop for surgeons at the annual American Society for Surgery of the Hand (in San Antonio, TX, Sept. 22-24) noted that: “The use of tissue sparing technology holds immense promise in treating basal thumb osteoarthritis that particularly afflicts women – predominantly peri-menopausal. We believe that procedures capable of restoring function are a compelling alternative in lieu of drug therapy or more aggressive surgical procedures that are currently performed.”
 
Anthony G. Viscogliosi, Chairman & CEO of SBI said: “These biomaterial-based surgical solutions represent the next wave in small bone and joint treatment that leverages the body’s ability to heal itself. They are an essential part of our objectives to develop innovative biodegradable materials and implants that meet the growing needs of patients and surgeons to restore small bone and joint function as well as eliminate pain.”

About SBI
Small Bone Innovations, LLC (SBI) was founded in 2004 by Viscogliosi Bros. LLC., (VB), the New York-based merchant banking firm that specializes in the musculoskeletal /orthopedic sector. VB created SBI as the first company to focus purely on small bone & joint science. By integrating established companies and professionals in the field, SBI today offers a broad, clinically proven portfolio of products and technologies to treat trauma and diseases in small bones & joints.

VB’s acquisitions and technology licenses include: Avanta Orthopaedics (hand/wrist/elbow arthroplasty and trauma products – USA); Envision (implant manufacturing – USA); Actipore™ (porous metal technology – Canada); Artelon® (biologically active & biodegradable technology – Sweden); Xtremi-T (resorbable trauma technology – USA); Fixano, S.A.S. (orthopedics, trauma and spine products - France).

For more information on SBI visit: www.totalsmallbone.com

About Viscogliosi Bros., LLC
Established by Marc R. Viscogliosi, John J. Viscogliosi and Anthony G. Viscogliosi in New York City in 1999, VB was the first venture capital/private equity and merchant banking firm dedicated to the musculoskeletal/orthopedics sector of the health care industry. Today, VB is a leading independent firm with a mission to create, build and finance companies founded on innovations developed by surgeons and uniquely focused on "life changing" musculoskeletal/orthopedic technologies. VB has worldwide surgeon, industry and trade relationships and significant financial expertise in the musculoskeletal/orthopedic sector.

As principals of VB, the Viscogliosi brothers have a combined total of more than 35 years experience analyzing and investing in the musculoskeletal/orthopedics sector. The have pioneered innovative financial, strategic and management initiatives for companies in the sector, from start-up, seed and development stage all the way to exit, while helping thousands of people lead better lives through the orthopedic and spinal products marketed and sold by the companies they have assisted in developing and financing.
 
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Viscogliosi Bros., LLC is not an investment adviser, money manager, asset manager or otherwise give investment advice.