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3-D Ear Canal Scanner Gets Funding

Photonics.com
Sep 2010
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Sept. 21, 2010 — Lantos Technologies Inc. has announced that it has closed on $1.6 million in a Series A financing to develop its novel 3-D ear canal imaging technology. Braintree-based Catalyst Health Ventures led the round, which was joined by Boston-based investors Excel Venture Management and Mass Medical Angels. Lantos’ technology provides fast, accurate and minimally invasive digital mapping of the human ear canal, enabling the development of comfortable, custom fit audio devices such as hearing aids, earphones and noise-canceling devices.

“Lantos is primed to revolutionize the way people experience hearing aids and custom devices for ears,” said Shahid Azim, CEO of the company. “We are fortunate to have a strong, experienced team and financial backing from a solid group of venture partners. The Series A financing will be used to complete product development and enable the market for all types of extended wear hearing devices with a more natural fit.”

“Lantos’ breakthrough imaging technology has the potential to greatly enhance the performance of in-ear communication devices in multiple markets,” said Darshana Zaveri, principal at Catalyst Health Ventures. “The technology, which enables precise fitting of hearing devices to the dimensions of the ear canal, promises to provide huge benefits to millions of people suffering from hearing loss, and also opens up new market opportunities in customized user interface for many everyday devices. Catalyst is thrilled to lead this financing and to help bring this exciting product to market.”

“Lantos’ scanner provides important technological improvements that may address multiple markets within the audiology field, including hearing aids, custom earphones, military, hearing protection and related diagnostic applications,” said Rick Blume, managing director at Excel Venture Management. “Additionally, this technology holds potentially much broader imaging applications beyond ear canal imaging, which makes Lantos a strong fit for Excel’s investment focus on companies with transformative technologies that address broad markets within, and beyond, healthcare.”

“We believe that our unique imaging approach stands to change the way people experience custom ear devices and the new data captured will drive product innovation in the industry for years to come,” said Douglas Hart, inventor of the technology. He is the founder and director of Lantos and a professor of mechanical engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Dubbed emission reabsorption laser-induced fluorescence, the imaging technology is a unique way of capturing 3-D, and the intra-aural scanner will be its first application in the medical imaging field.

Lantos Technologies was previously recipient of the prestigious innovation grant from MIT’s Deshpande Center, which provided the initial seed capital for primary research.

For more information, visit: www.lantostechnologies.com 


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