Welcome to the Desert Angels™. We are a Tucson, Arizona based non-profit organization of accredited investors who seek opportunities to invest in Southwest regional startup or early stage companies. The organization serves as a forum for its over 95 members, who invest individually from their personal funds. Since 2000, Desert Angel members have invested over $26 million in more than 65 presenting companies.

Edison Awards Selects SynCardia’s Freedom Portable Driver As a 2014 Innovation Finalist

by chrismarin on February 26th, 2014 at 12:27am

The Freedom® portable driver that powers the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart, the world’s first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE (Europe) approved Total Artificial Heart, has been named one of four finalists for the 2014 Edison Awards’ devices section in the science/medical category.

For more: Edison Awards Selects SynCardia’s Freedom Portable Driver As a 2014 Innovation Finalist

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In search of a cure, scientists look for where HIV hides

by chrismarin on February 16th, 2014 at 9:16pm

Desert Angels portfolio company Calimmune is mentioned is highlighted in a PBS NewsHour Health broadcast as a company at the forefront of gene therapy treatment for HIV patients.
For video and more: In search of a cure, scientists look for where HIV hides

Desert Angels portfolio company Calimmune is mentioned is highlighted in a PBS NewsHour Health broadcast as a company at the forefront of gene therapy treatment for HIV patients.

For video and more: In search of a cure, scientists look for where HIV hides

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Sialix Closes Oversubscribed Second Tranche of Series B Financing

by chrismarin on February 7th, 2014 at 8:33pm

Sialix, Inc., a biotechnology company developing products for the treatment and prevention of cancer, today announced the closing of an oversubscribed $1.2 million tranche of an angel-led financing. Among the investors were several angel investment groups including the Desert Angels.
“Building a biotech company today is challenging, and at this stage we have chosen to maintain a lean structure that can be supported with angel funding. It is terrific and validating to get such strong support from a wide variety of angel groups,” said Jeff Behrens, Sialix’s CEO.
Read more: Sialix Closes Oversubscribed Second Tranche of Series B Financing

Sialix, Inc., a biotechnology company developing products for the treatment and prevention of cancer, today announced the closing of an oversubscribed $1.2 million tranche of an angel-led financing. Among the investors were several angel investment groups including the Desert Angels.

“Building a biotech company today is challenging, and at this stage we have chosen to maintain a lean structure that can be supported with angel funding. It is terrific and validating to get such strong support from a wide variety of angel groups,” said Jeff Behrens, Sialix’s CEO.

Read more: Sialix Closes Oversubscribed Second Tranche of Series B Financing

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Tucson cancer-drug firm inks key licensing deal

by chrismarin on January 16th, 2014 at 10:50pm

Tucson-based Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals Inc. has signed an exclusive licensing agreement with a Swiss drug company for European and Japanese rights to develop and commercialize a gastrointestinal-cancer-prevention drug.

The local Desert Angels portfolio company could get payments of more than $100 million over time for hitting drug development and sales milestones, as part of its agreement with Tillotts Pharma AG, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tokyo-based Zeria Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals said.

For more: Tucson cancer-drug firm inks key licensing deal

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SynCardia raises $14M to develop heart

by chrismarin on December 22nd, 2013 at 3:08am

Tucson-based SynCardia Systems Inc. has raised another $14 million to bankroll development of its artificial heart and related products. The new financing will help spur development of a new, smaller 50cc version of the approved 70cc SynCardia Total Artificial Heart, the availability of the Freedom portable driver and the use of SynCardia technology as a “destination therapy” for patients who are not transplant candidates, said Michael Garippa, president and CEO of SynCardia.

SynCardia’s Total Artificial Heart is the first and only device approved as a bridge to transplant in the U.S., Europe and Canada.

For more: SynCardia raises $14M to develop heart

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Tucson’s Strongwatch looking to ride border-security wave

by chrismarin on December 1st, 2013 at 6:46pm

Desert Angels portfolio company Strongwatch is teamed with General Dynamics to compete for a Homeland Security contract for mobile surveillance systems potentially worth $50 million. “It’s a big deal — it’s essentially the first major opportunity for our technology to serve national security on the border,” Strongwatch CEO Powell said.

Strongwatch was one of six companies awarded $250,000 grants under the Arizona Commerce Authority’s Innovation Challenge in June. Last week, Strongwatch won the Small Business Innovation award of the Governor’s Celebration of Innovation, sponsored by the Arizona Commerce Authority and the Arizona Technology Council.

For more: Tucson’s Strongwatch looking to ride border-security wave

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1,200th Worldwide Implant of the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart Occurs in Indiana

by chrismarin on November 18th, 2013 at 11:25pm

An Indiana man has become the 1,200th person in the world to be implanted with the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart. Patrick O’Hara is the first person in Indiana to receive the life-saving device and the first Hoosier to be discharged from the hospital with the Freedom® portable driver. Desert Angels portfolio company SynCardia Systems, Inc. is the privately-held manufacturer of the world’s first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE approved Total Artificial Heart and headquartered in Tucson, AZ.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1579592#ixzz2l2MyZsjo

For more: 1,200th Worldwide Implant of the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart Occurs in Indiana

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McGuire Center and StrongWatch feted for innovation

by chrismarin on November 17th, 2013 at 1:17am

The University of Arizona’s McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship and a local company that makes mobile surveillance systems were honored at the 2013 Governor’s Celebration of Innovation Awards Thursday night in Phoenix.

The McGuire Center was given the Innovator of the Year award for academia, while Tucson-based StrongWatch Corp. won the small-company Innovator of the Year award. Desert Angels portfolio company StrongWatch offers products for video surveillance market, including mobile camera systems used by law enforcement agencies and emergency responders.

For more: McGuire Center, Tucson tech firm feted for innovation

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MSDx, A Pioneering Diagnostics Company, Receives Grant to Advance Technology

by chrismarin on November 4th, 2013 at 11:52pm

The Arizona Center for Innovation (AzCI) is pleased to announce that the Flinn Foundation has selected desert angels portfolio company MSDx, Inc. to receive grant funding and program services through the Foundation’s 2013 Bioscience Entrepreneurship Program. MSDx is a personalized medicine diagnostics company developing blood test products for monitoring disease activity in neurological disorders such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The Foundation funding will be used to support further development of the MSDx blood testing technology.

For more: MSDx, A Pioneering Diagnostics Company, Receives Grant to Advance Technology

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Tucson’s HGT Molecular speeds up genetic testing

by chrismarin on September 30th, 2013 at 11:04pm

Desert Angels portfolio company HTG Molecular Diagnostics has taken its proprietary, high-capacity platform for testing gene expression and incorporated it into an automated instrument that shrank a three-day process into a 24-hour turnaround.

And, with the help of a new federal grant worth up to $1.6 million, Tucson-based HTG is looking to adapt its instrument to next-generation genetic sequencers. HTG’s Edge instrument, launched last fall, is based on the company’s core technology, which allows researchers to rapidly test multiple samples for the presence of an array of genetic markers at once.

For more: Tucson’s HGT Molecular speeds up genetic testing

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