Edinburgh dental tech pioneer eyes US push after funding injection and board changes

An Edinburgh-based dental tech business is preparing to sink its teeth into the US market following a restructuring of its board and the successful completion of its latest funding round.

Calcivis has developed the world’s first biotechnology-based dental imaging system and has been part of the portfolio of Archangels, the Scottish business angel syndicate, since 2012.

The firm’s advanced imaging system can identify active tooth decay at an early stage, allowing dentists to use preventive treatments.

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Life sciences veteran John Brown has been appointed non-executive chairman, succeeding James Browning, who has stepped down from the role after eight years on the Calcivis board.

Adam Christie, chief executive, and Dr John Brown, incoming chairman, Edinburgh-based Calcivis. Picture: Peter Devlin

Brown has had a long association with the company’s largest shareholder, Archangels, having chaired and overseen exits from two portfolio companies: Touch Bionics Ltd and CXR Biosciences. He is the current chairman of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult and senior non-executive director of Acacia Pharma and YourGene Health.

In the public sector, Brown is chairman of the Roslin Foundation, a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and an honorary professor of the University of Edinburgh.

He said: “Calcivis is at a very exciting point in its development. This device provides what many clinicians believe to be the ‘holy grail’ of preventive dentistry and, with a US launch scheduled for next year, Calcivis is in a strong position to help dentists in the world’s biggest market to identify dental decay before it’s too late to save the tooth.”

The firm has also appointed Vancouver-based Michael Crane as a non-executive director. Crane, who has worked as an adviser to Calcivis for a number of years, has some 35 years’ experience in the dental field, both in the US and Europe, and is said to bring a “wealth of contacts” and a track record of commercialising dental technologies.

He has held the position of senior vice president, North America group, and senior vice president, international group, for Dentsply, now Dentsply/Sirona.

Crane has also held senior positions with Johnson and Johnson Dental Products Company, and Ortho Pharmaceutical (Canada) Ltd. He holds a bachelor of commerce degree from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.

He said: “I’m confident that Calcivis can revolutionise the world of preventive dentistry at a time when many patients are suffering the effects of not being able to see their dentist for check-ups due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The Calcivis device will arm dentists across North America with the ability to spot tooth demineralisation earlier than has ever been possible before, allowing them to take the necessary steps, such as the deployment of fluoride varnishes, sealants and remineralising agents and to monitor the effectiveness of their treatment.”

Calcivis has completed a £1.52 million equity fund raise, led by Archangels and also featuring investment from Scottish Enterprise and Lynx Financial.

Adam Christie, chief executive of Calcivis, said: “These appointments and the successful completion of another funding round signal the opening of a new chapter in the Calcivis story as we prepare to launch our device in the US and see the hard work, dedication and enthusiasm shown by the whole Calcivis team become a reality.”

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