Contacts: Anthony Viscogliosi, Small Bone Innovations, Inc. (212) 583-9700 ext. 100
Charity Proto, Creative Partners, (203) 705-9209 Cell: (203) 521-7533

France’s Leading Spine Surgeon, Thierry Marnay, MD Receives Frauenthal Award From New York University Hospital for Joint Diseases

Inventor of implant to treat degenerative disc disease recognized

NEW YORK NY, November 8, 2006 -
At a ceremony at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel Grand Ballroom Monday night, Thierry Marnay, MD of Montpellier, France, a leading orthopedic surgeon, inventor of the ‘ProDisc®’ spinal disc replacement system, and member of the board of directors of Small Bone Innovations, Inc. (SBi), received the Frauenthal Award for Medical Excellence from the New York University Hospital for Joint Diseases (NYU-HJD).

The annual award, named for the 101 year-old hospital’s founding physicians, Henry and Herman Frauenthal, was presented to Dr. Marnay by two of NYU-HJD’s leading orthopedic surgeons and teachers, Drs. Thomas J. Errico, chief of spine service, and Joseph J. Zuckerman, chairman of the department of orthopedic surgery.

Drs. Thomas J. Errico (LEFT) and Joseph J. Zuckerman (RIGHT) of the New York University Hospital for Joint Diseases presented the hospital’s annual Frauenthal Award for Medical Excellence to Dr. Thierry Marnay (CENTER), a leading orthopedic surgeon of Montpellier, France, on November 6, at a ceremony held at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. Dr. Marnay was recognized for inventing the ‘ProDisc®’ spinal disc replacement system to treat degenerative disc disease.

Photo Credit: Joe Schildhorn/

Dr. Marnay began his research on artificial spinal disc implants in the 1980s at the University of Montpellier where he is head of orthopedics. In 1989, a prototype of the ProDisc for lumbar disc replacement was designed and, during an ensuing three-year clinical trial, 93 discs were implanted in 64 patients with encouraging results, leading to a “CE approval” from the European Union granting wider use of the device.

Since then, more than 10,000 discs have been implanted worldwide, including those used in U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clinical trials. In August 2006, the FDA granted to Synthes, Inc. approval of the ProDisc®-L Total Disc Replacement for commercial distribution in the United States to treat lower back pain in patients with degenerative disc disease.

The disc system, including a cervical disc implant that is currently in FDA trials in the U.S., was commercialized by Spine Solutions, Inc., New York, a company founded by Viscogliosi Bros., LLC, and Anthony, John and Marc Viscogliosi that was subsequently acquired in 2003 by Synthes, Inc., a major global manufacturer of orthopedic devices.

In accepting the award, Dr. Marnay said, “It is very humbling to have my name associated with that of the Frauenthal brothers who pushed the boundaries of orthopedic surgery to help create a world center of excellence here in New York.”

Commenting on his long association with Dr. Marnay, SBi Chairman & CEO Anthony Viscogliosi said, “There is no question that Dr. Marnay is regarded as the ‘Father of Non-Fusion’ – the new wave in treating joint diseases by not only alleviating pain, but also restoring motion and function – thereby giving hope to millions of sufferers everywhere. I could not think of a more deserving recipient of this prestigious award.”

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About Small Bone Innovations, Inc.

Small Bone Innovations, Inc. (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); and Fixano, S.A.S. (broad line of small bone & joint implants - France).

SBi completed a Series B financing, raising a record total of $42.2 million, announced in January, 2006. Based on data provided by Venture Source, this was the largest venture capital investment ever recorded in the field of orthopedic devices.

SBi was a 2006 recipient of Red Herring magazine’s annual “Red Herring 100 North America” award, recognized as one of the nation’s leading technology companies and the only orthopedic device company selected among an initial entry of more than one thousand firms. Additionally, SBi’s Artelon CMC-I Spacer, developed for patients with thumb base osteoarthritis, was featured on the cover and highlighted within Medical Design Technology magazine’s “Year of Innovation” issue as one of the most fascinating technologies influencing the medical device industry.
About Viscogliosi Bros., LLC
Established by Marc R. Viscogliosi, John J. Viscogliosi and Anthony G. Viscogliosi in New York City in 1999, Viscogliosi Bros., LLC (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 nearly half a century of experience analyzing and investing in the musculoskeletal/orthopedics sector, directing literally billions of dollars through the orthopedics industry.  They have pioneered innovative financial, strategic and management initiatives for nearly 150 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.

For more information about VB, please visit:

About NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases
The NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases (HJD) is one of only five orthopedic/rheumatology hospitals in the world, and the only one with a program in neurology. HJD was founded in Harlem in 1905 and quickly earned a reputation for innovation in musculoskeletal care.

HJD researchers conducted the first extensive research in arthroscopic techniques in the U.S., beginning in the late twenties, developed the earliest orthopaedic procedures for polio and congenital deformities in children in the 1940s, and discovered the gene that increases risk for rheumatoid arthritis in 1986, to name just a few advances. HJD maintains an extensive research program in musculoskeletal disease and is home to the nation's largest orthopaedic residency program.

In 1979, HJD moved to it present site at 17th Street and Second Avenue, a 17-floor facility with 190 beds. HJD merged with the Medical Center in 2006, creating the NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases. HJD now offers extensive clinical programs in orthopedics, rheumatology, neurology, physical medicine and rehabilitation, physical and occupational therapy, and radiology. Treatment is provided in a variety of subspecialty areas, including joint replacement, pediatrics, sports medicine, spinal hand, shoulder, elbow, foot and ankle disorders, pain management, and urgent orthopaedic care. HJD also offers primary and gynecological care for women with disabilities through its Initiative for Women with Disabilities/Elly and Steve Hammerman Health and Wellness Center. Each year, HJD treats about 5,100 inpatients and 96,000 outpatients and performs 12,000 surgeries.

Forward-looking statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by these forward-looking statements as a result of risks and uncertainties impacting the Company's business including increased competition; the ability of the Company to expand its operations and to attract and retain qualified professionals; technological obsolescence; general economic conditions; and other risks.

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