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SK Biopharmaceuticals partners with U.S. biotech company Cala to fuel innovation in neurology

By Lim Chang-won Posted : May 19, 2022, 11:04 Updated : May 19, 2022, 11:04

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SEOUL -- SK Biopharmaceuticals and its parent investment company, SK Inc., will make an unspecified amount of investment in Cala Health, a Silicon Valley-based bioelectronic medicine company, to secure opportunities for potential technology collaboration and explore solutions for new indications in neurology.

The two SK Group units have participated in a Series D funding round for Cala, the leader in non-invasive bioelectronic therapy via a wearable device that is proven to reduce essential tremors. SK Biopharmaceuticals said the investment in Cala will pave the way for further strategic partnership and investment in the largest biotech and healthcare market.

SK Biopharmaceuticals has focused on the development of treatments for central nervous system disorders including epilepsy. The company said its strategic partnership with Cala would open up the potential to explore solutions for new indications in neurology and become a "stepping stone" to drive innovation in patient access and care.

"We are excited to forge a strategic partnership with Cala Health in bioelectronic medicine, and further support our common goal of spurring innovation and improving patients' lives," SK Biopharmaceuticals CEO Cho Jeong-woo said in a statement on May 19.

SK Biopharmaceuticals is developing a digital therapeutic device that can detect seizures for patients with epilepsy. Digital treatments are software and devices that directly prevent, manage, and treat diseases using digital technology. They enable personalized treatment for patients using AI and big data technologies, and have a low risk of side effects.

Cala's wearable neuromodulation therapies merge innovations in neuroscience and technology to deliver individualized peripheral nerve stimulation, and its vertically integrated commercial model is reshaping the delivery of prescription therapies. "Together, we will accelerate the realization of our joint mission of developing treatments and driving innovation to help more patients struggling with neurologic disorders," said Cala CEO Renee Ryan.

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