Health tech company Tivic Health Systems is expanding its intellectual property portfolio with a new patent in vagus nerve stimulation. The San Francisco, US-based company has filed the patent with the U.S. Patent Office (USPTO).

Vagus nerve stimulation is an area of medicine with high interest owing to its therapeutic potential.

The company currently has five issued U.S. patents, 96 claims, and 20 pending patents in the U.S. and abroad. Tivic’s current products are centered around trigeminal and sympathetic nerve structures. The entry into vagus nerve simulation is focused on a novel circuit design developed by the company that can precisely target signals carried by the vagus nerve.

The vagus nerve is one the twelve cranial nerves in the body and is responsible for internal organ functions including digestion, breathing, heart rate, cardiovascular activity and reflex actions. It’s critical role in the autonomic nervous system makes it a target for therapy for numerous neurological conditions.

In April 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved an expanded indication for Electrocore’s non-invasive vagus stimulation device gammaCore to include the prevention of migraines. More recently, LivaNova launched its implantable pulse generator for vagus nerve stimulation therapy after it received FDA 510(k) clearance.

“Non-invasive stimulation with precision targeting of the vagus nerve is directly in support of our strategic goals to expand our proprietary footprint in bioelectronic medicine,” said Jennifer Ernst, CEO of Tivic.

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“This patent could advance the field of bioelectronic medicine with a more precise approach to the treatment of cardiovascular, neurological/psychiatric, and systemic inflammatory chronic health conditions without surgery, implants, or pharmaceuticals.”