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 100 members, who invest individually from their personal funds. Since 2000, Desert Angel members have invested over $29 million in more than 70 presenting companies.

Stem cell therapy could lead to HIV cure

by chrismarin on August 7th, 2014 at 4:03pm

Desert Angels portfolio company Calimmune is recognized for being at the forefont of developing a practical cure for people living with HIV infection.

Special note: The article erroneously credits the company as a San Diego based company – Calimmune is a Tucson based company.

For more: Stem cell therapy could lead to HIV cure

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Filed under: Funded Companies, Press

Contatta’s collaborative email now available for free public beta testing

by chrismarin on August 6th, 2014 at 12:17am

Contatta, the Scottsdale-based creator of the email application, announced Monday it is now free for anyone who wants to sign up online. It will become a paid service in the fall. Contatta is designed to address four common problems: collaboration and discussions with others, task management, contact management and keeping files handy.

For more: Contatta’s collaborative email now available for free public beta testing

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Filed under: Funded Companies, Press

Calimmune Approved to Treat Second Group in HIV Stem Cell Gene Modification Study

by Curtis Gunn on July 21st, 2014 at 5:26pm

Calimmune today announced encouraging safety data from its innovative gene-based stem cell therapy, Cal-1-being developed to help cure individuals infected with HIV. The company can now begin treating the second group of patients in the trial, which is being funded in part by a grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM).

Link to Full Article.

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HTG receives US patent for HTG EdgeSeq chemistry

by Curtis Gunn on July 21st, 2014 at 5:18pm

HTG Molecular Diagnostics, a provider of instruments and reagents for translational research and molecular diagnostics, today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued U.S. Patent No. 8,741,564 claiming a method for using quantitative nuclease protection technology in combination with next-generation-sequencing.

Link to Full Article.

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FDA approves SynCardia’s artificial-heart power pack

by chrismarin on July 18th, 2014 at 6:51pm

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has given the nod to Tucson-based SynCardia Systems Inc. to begin marketing in the U.S. its Freedom portable driver that powers the company’s total artificial heart.

Not only does that mean the company will begin hiring more people to make and sell the device, but it also means reducing the length of stay in hospitals for heart transplant patients. Before SynCardia invented the Freedom portable driver, U.S. patients were stuck in the hospital for years because the power pack that charges the company’s artificial heart was too big to allow patients to move around freely.

For more: FDA approves SynCardia’s artificial-heart power pack

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Filed under: Funded Companies, Press

PlayAbility Toys Provides Kids a Special Kind of Play

by chrismarin on July 9th, 2014 at 2:15am

Desert Angels portfolio company PlayAbility Toys is highlighted as one of the few companies dedicated to creating toys for special needs children.

For more: PlayAbility Toys Provides Kids a Special Kind of Play

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Filed under: Funded Companies, Press

Contatta Funding Reaches $7.9 Million

by chrismarin on June 23rd, 2014 at 7:38pm

Contatta, the world’s first collaborative email, co-founded by Pat Sullivan of ACT! and SalesLogix acclaim, today announced it has completed a $1.5 million convertible round, bringing total funding to $7.9 million. Desert Angels and ATIF were the only outside investors in this round of financing.

“Desert Angels are very excited to be co-investors along with Arizona Technology Investors Forum to support the continued development of Contatta to be the next great innovation in collaborative email,” said Curtis Gunn, Chairman of Desert Angels.

For more: Contatta Funding Reaches $7.9 Million

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Filed under: Funded Companies, Press

1,300th Implant of the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart Was Performed in April 2014

by chrismarin on May 28th, 2014 at 8:32pm

SynCardia Systems, Inc. announced today that a United States patient with end-stage biventricular heart failure received the 1,300th implant of the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart as a bridge to transplant in April 2014.

For more: 1,300th Implant of the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart Was Performed in April 2014

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SynCardia Total Artificial Heart with SynHall Valves Receives CE Mark

by chrismarin on May 20th, 2014 at 10:49pm

On April 17, 2014, SynCardia Systems, Inc. received the CE Mark for the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart with SynHall™ valves, providing the company with control over the last key component required for heart manufacturing. These robust valves of titanium and pyrolytic carbon have never failed in more than 1,300 implants of the SynCardia Heart, accounting for well over 5,000 valves and over 30 years of use.

“With the CE Mark for SynCardia Total Artificial Heart with SynHall valves, we control the last of two key components required for SynCardia Heart manufacturing,” said Michael P. Garippa, SynCardia CEO and President.

For more: SynCardia Total Artificial Heart with SynHall Valves Receives CE Mark

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Tucson rewards app for smartphone rolls out this summer

by chrismarin on April 22nd, 2014 at 10:43pm

Veebo, originally called Veebow, has been in the making for three years, and the newest version is ready to launch this summer on all smartphone platforms for free in Tucson, Phoenix and Chicago. The updated Veebo application allows merchants to directly reward loyal customers while also attracting new customers through various interactive features.

Veebo recently named Tucson businesswoman and Desert Angel Raena Janes as the company’s new CEO.

For more: Tucson rewards app for smartphone rolls out this summer

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Filed under: Funded Companies, Press