Cleveland HeartLab Partners with SK Telecom to Provide Valuable Cardiovascular Testing in China

Collaboration between the premier cardiovascular disease management company and one of Asia's largest companies accelerates access to CHL's valuable CVD testing within one of the largest global healthcare markets, expanding upon existing independent clinical lab in China

CLEVELAND, March 17, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Cleveland HeartLab Inc. (CHL), the premier cardiovascular disease management company, today announced a pioneering new partnership with SK Telecom (NYSE: SKM, KSE: 017670), one of the largest information and communications technology companies in Asia, to bring CHL's innovative inflammation tests for identification and prevention of heart disease to the growing number of patients who are at risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in China.  One in five adults in China, approximately 230 million people, have risk for CVD.

This new partnership builds on SK Telecom's commitment to entering the Chinese Healthcare market following the opening of SK Telecom Healthcare R&D Center and VISTA-SK Medical Center in Shenzhen.  With growing needs for quality healthcare services in China, SK Telecom selected China as a key target market for its healthcare business and plans to expand its presence in other major cities across the country.

"Partnering with SK Telecom, a world renowned company that is investing heavily in healthcare in China, is an ideal opportunity for CHL that will provide quicker and broader access to CHL's unique and valuable testing to a large patient population in need of better risk identification," said Jake Orville, CEO of  Cleveland HeartLab.

As the premier provider of inflammation testing within North America, bringing its novel and valuable test menu and product pipeline to large international markets in need of better identification of CVD is a key strategic priority.  Last year, CHL received the international quality standard, ISO 13485 designation and achievement of CE marking for its Universal MPO test.  Both are important staples of CHL's commitment to delivering high quality testing to international markets. These benchmarks dramatically increased access for patients around the globe to CHL's valuable inflammation testing.

CHL's testing has been recognized in hundreds of peer-reviewed publications as a key measure of vascular health and inflammation.  A peer-reviewed study in Journal of Economics demonstrated the economic impact of CHL's testing by adverting 10 percent of heart attacks and strokes, which can save approximately $190 million per 1 million people in a typical U.S. population.

"CHL's unique tests will be greatly valued by medical professionals as people are increasingly concerned with disease prevention. SK Telecom's expertise and experience in China combined with CHL's tests will lead to rapid market penetration by offering Chinese people a reliable tool to assess their risk for CVD and proactively address their condition," said Yook Tae-sun, EVP and head of New Business Division at SK Telecom.

In China today, about 230 million people—20 percent of all adults—now have cardiovascular disease1. As of 2010, 154.8 per 100,000 deaths per year are estimated to be associated with CVD in the urban areas of China. That number is even larger, 163.1/100,000 deaths, in rural areas.

This CVD epidemic in China is projected to worsen.  Annual CVD events are predicted to increase by 50 percent between 2010 and 2030 based on population aging and growth. While fewer Chinese are smoking, diabetes is rapidly rising. Projected trends in blood pressure, total cholesterol, diabetes and active smoking are projected to increase annual CVD events by an additional 23 percent to 7.7 million CVD deaths by 2030.

About SK Telecom

SK Telecom (NYSE: SKM, KSE: 017670), established in 1984, is Korea's largest telecommunications company with more than 26 million mobile subscribers, accounting for around 50 percent of the market. The company reached KRW 17.137 trillion in revenue in 2015. As the world's first company to commercialize CDMA, CDMA 2000 1x, CDMA EV-DO and HSDPA networks, SK Telecom launched the nation's first LTE service in July 2011. SK Telecom also became the world's first mobile carrier to commercialize 150Mbps LTE-Advanced in June 2013 and 225Mbps LTE-Advanced in June 2014 through Carrier Aggregation (CA). In line with its efforts to swiftly move towards the next-generation mobile network system, or 5G, it successfully commercialized 300Mbps tri-band LTE-A CA. As of the end of December 2015, the company has over 18.98 million LTE and LTE-Advanced subscribers. Based on its strength in network operations business, SK Telecom is seeking new growth engines through three innovative platforms namely Lifestyle Enhancement Platform, Advanced Media Platform and IoT Service Platform. For more information, please visit www.sktelecom.com or email skt_press@sk.com.

About Cleveland HeartLab

Cleveland HeartLab Inc. is the premier cardiovascular disease (CVD) Management Company with a comprehensive array of proprietary tests focused on improving the early identification of those with CVD risk. In addition to its industry leading approach to inflammation testing, CHL manages a robust R&D program to accelerate the clinical use of scientifically proven and medically relevant biomarkers. CHL's biomarkers have been validated in more than 100 peer-review studies published in leading medical and scientific journals. Formed in 2009 as a spin-off from the Cleveland Clinic, CHL offers its testing to thousands of leading clinicians focused on health and wellness as well as corporate wellness plans through its CAP-accredited and CLIA-certified clinical lab. Half of all patients who suffer from heart attack have normal cholesterol. With the goal of improving CVD risk assessment, CHL's unique testing provides a more complete picture of CVD risk allowing clinicians to deploy personalized medical programs and interventions to reduce the overall risk of CVD, with a specific focus on reducing the risks of inflammation. In a 2015 Journal of Medical Economics study on the economic impact of CHL's core inflammation tests, CHL's CVD management protocol demonstrated the potential to avoid nearly 10 percent of heart attacks and strokes for patients of average health. The cost of care averted was estimated to exceed $187 million. CHL holds over 20 issued and 30 pending global patents and has been recognized for its innovation with the prestigious Nortech Innovation Award, The Ohio Venture of the Year Award and the Edison Crystal Award for Excellence. CHL was also named an "Inc. 5,000" company in recognition of its innovation and growth. For more information about CHL visit us at www.clevelandheartlab.com. For more information on CVD visit www.knowyourrisk.com.

References:

1) Hua Li &JunboGe, Cardiovascular diseases in China: Current status and future perspectives; IJC Heart & Vasculature 6 (2015) 25–31.

 

SOURCE Cleveland HeartLab Inc.

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