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US-based pharmaceuticals and health care products firm Abbott has entered into an agreement to acquire medical device firm Topera, for $250m.

Topera is focused on developing new electrophysiology technologies to improve the diagnosis and treatment of atrial fibrillation, one of the most common heart rhythm disorders in the world.

Potential future payments based on achieving performance milestones are also included in the agreement, and the acquisition will allow Abbott to enter into the $3bn worth catheter-based electrophysiology market.

Topera developed a diagnostic catheter and mapping software, or rotor identification system, which allows physicians to identify and target the specific areas of a person’s heart that are perpetuating atrial fibrillation.

“The acquisition will allow Abbott to enter into the $3bn worth catheter-based electrophysiology market.”

The rotor system features RhythmView workstation and the FIRMap diagnostic catheter, which helps physicians to identify and locate rotors, the specific areas within the heart acting as a sustaining mechanism for atrial fibrillation.

In 2013, RhythmView workstation and FIRMap diagnostic catheter secured US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CE Mark approval.

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Abbott medical devices executive vice-president John Capek said: “There is significant room to use advanced rotor identification technologies to improve the success rate and reduce the need for multiple ablation procedures, and thus improve the health of people with atrial fibrillation.

“The Topera acquisition and our agreement with ACT provide a foundational entry into the large, high-growth electrophysiology market, with differentiated technologies that can transform the way physicians treat people with complex heart rhythm disorders.”

Abbott also secured the right to acquire Advanced Cardiac Therapeutics (ACT) in a separate transaction.

ACT has been involved in developing an ablation catheter to improve the safety and effectiveness of ablation procedures.

Indiana University Health professor of medicine and director of Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology John Miller said: “Topera’s mapping technology has the potential to change the paradigm for how physicians approach treating people with atrial fibrillation.

“The ability to more accurately target the areas of the heart perpetuating atrial fibrillation is a significant advancement in the field of electrophysiology, which may allow us to treat more people with atrial fibrillation and lead to better health results.”