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CANCER TREATMENT FIRM NOVOCURE SECURES INVESTMENTS FROM PFIZER AND JOHNSON & JOHNSON

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NovoCure, Ltd., an Israeli medical device company focused on non-invasive cancer treatment, recently received financial funding from Pfizer Inc, Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation and Index Ventures.

Pfizer previously made a direct investment in Quark Pharmaceuticals Inc., and also established several joint ventures with Israeli diagnostic companies.

Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation has already invested in several Israeli medical devices start-ups, including Mazor Surgical Technologies Ltd., Medigus Ltd., Aposense Ltd., BrainsGate Ltd., and Omrix Biopharmaceuticals Inc., which it acquired last year at a value of $465 million.

NovoCure will use the proceeds to finance the continuation of the trial of its Novo-TTF device, a non-invasive portable medical device for the treatment of cancer. The device is being tested as a treatment for a type of brain cancer.  

The Novo-TTF device is a unique cancer treatment that uses specially tuned, low intensity electrical fields (Tumor Treating Fields or TTFields) to disrupt cell division. Rapidly dividing cancerous cells are affected by the TTFields while healthy, non-dividing cells are not affected, yielding a targeted treatment with minimal side effects.  

  “The NovoCure TTF therapy is a completely novel approach to fighting cancer,” said Bill Burkoth, Director of Pfizer Ventures. “Pilot clinical trials suggest that TTF therapy plus chemotherapy has the potential to significantly improve patient survival.”