The New Jersey attorney general has launched a probe into whether orthopedic-device maker Synthes Spine, West Chester, Pa., properly disclosed the financial interest of surgeons involved in premarket research of its spinal implant ProDisc.
Attorney General Anne Milgram has subpoenaed documents from Synthes Spine and the New York-based venture capital firm Viscogliosi Bros., according to a news release from the attorney generals office. Viscogliosi provided initial funding for development of ProDisc, an implant alternative to spinal-fusion surgery, by, in part, soliciting investments from at least five of the doctorssome New Jersey-basedwho participated in clinical trials of the device.
The physicians each invested between $100,000 and $250,000 in a fund operated by Viscogliosi, but those investments were not fully disclosed to patients participating in clinical trials of ProDisc, according to news reports. The Food and Drug Administration approved the device in August 2006. -- by Shawn Rhea
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