Fogarty Innovation company-in-residence iDentical, a startup developing a revolutionary drill-free dental implant, continues to make great strides towards its goal of making tooth replacement safer, faster, and more accessible for patients.
This is welcome news for the more than 150 million adults in the U.S. alone who are missing at least one tooth. The current standard of care for tooth replacement is a dental implant in which clinicians drill a hole in the patient’s jawbone and then screw a threaded titanium implant into the bone. Given the complexity of the procedure, potential complications, high cost and general fear of the procedure, only a small fraction of patients missing teeth actually receive implants today. Clearly a better approach is needed.
Initial pilot study shows great promise
Earlier this year, iDentical launched a first-in-human pilot study of its drill-free technology at University of São Paulo School of Dentistry in Brazil. To date, patients who have received the company’s implants are doing very well. “We’ve already seen strong, positive results. Our implants are functioning as expected and are successfully integrating with the surrounding bone,” said Iris Wedeking, iDentical CEO and co-founder.
Procedural feedback from clinicians has also been very positive, with the implants being placed within five minutes, versus 30 to 60 minutes for traditional implants. “The patients are thrilled by how fast and easy the procedure is, and the dentist is excited not to be encumbered by the many drills, tools and accessories that are required with traditional implants,” she said.
This ease of use and drill-free approach means that any dentist capable of extracting a tooth can easily place an iDentical implant. This could greatly expand the number of dentists who perform implant procedures, allowing this important treatment option to be much more widely available to patients.
iDentical on track to achieve upcoming milestones
iDentical recently raised $1.5 million in convertible notes, giving the company a solid runway to collect data from its initial pilot study and expand its team. iDentical is also streamlining its implant production process, allowing the personalized 3D printed implants to reach customers even faster following tooth extraction. All this comes on the heels of the company receiving its first US patent allowance, an exciting milestone in protecting its technology.
Looking to the future, the company plans to raise a Series A round later this year, which will be used to complete a pivotal clinical study designed to support regulatory approval. “Based on our positive clinical results to date, iDentical is optimistic that we’re on the right track for a successful clinical study followed by FDA clearance,” said Iris. “As a company, we’re excited to bring this innovative approach to market and bridge the gap between patients and the dental implants they need to eat the foods they love, smile with confidence and maintain their quality of life.”