By Brandon Glenn

Hemosphere Inc., which sells a vein-access device for chronic kidney disease patients, has hired a former St. Jude Medical (NYSE:STJ) sales and marketing leader as its new chief executive.

Patrick Wethington spent about 10 years with St. Jude before his most recent post, vice president of sales and marketing at Sweden-based Gambro Inc., which also sells medical technology aimed at patients with kidney problems.

Wethington succeeds Doris Engibous, who had worked as Hemosphere’s CEO for the last five-and-a-half years, according to a statement from the company. CFO Sue Horvath said Engibous’ decision to leave the company was voluntary and that she’d stay on for a brief time to help Wethington’s transition.

With Hemosphere focused on commercializing its technology, Wethington is a better fit at this stage of the company’s lifecycle because he has more sales and marketing experience than Engibous, Horvath said.

The company’s device, called the HeRo, was approved by the Food & Drug Administration in 2008. The device is made of a tube and a graft that are implanted under a patient’s skin to allow arterial access. Engibous said in April that the company was on track to hit about $6 million in sales this year, more than double last year.

In March, Hemosphere raised $9.3 million in a Series "A1" round that was led by Kaiser Permanente Ventures and Cleveland’s Mutual Capital Partners. Engibous said the company planned to use the funding to expand its sales team. Hemosphere has raised $33 million since it was founded.