Press release

DSM announces multi-year collaboration with UMC Utrecht for feasibility study of novel transcatheter heart valves made with Dyneema Purity® fibers

Berkeley CA, US, 21 Feb 2012 16:15 CET

UMC Utrecht will develop and test prototype scaffolds made of Dyneema Purity® fibers for the preclinical, in-vivo implantation of heart valves in larger diameter arteries.

DSM, a global leader in biomedical materials sciences, and University Medical Center Utrecht, a leading academic hospital with a renowned experimental facility unit for cardiothoracic interventions today announced that they have entered into a collaboration agreement. DSM will contribute its Dyneema Purity fiber technology to enable UMC Utrecht to develop and evaluate a prototype of a non-biological supportive scaffold for the minimally invasive treatment of valvular and vascular diseases.

The primary objective of this collaboration is to combine UMC Utrecht’s clinical expertise and cardiovascular device testing experience with DSM’s innovative fiber technology and fiber processing expertise. UMC Utrecht chose DSM’s Dyneema Purity fibers for designing heart valve and blood vessel wound closure devices for their extreme strength, high flex fatigue resistance, low elongation, minimal profile and tear resistant properties.

This collaboration fits with the open innovation agenda that DSM pursues. The end goal of this collaboration is to build up know-how and assess the preclinical feasibility of a fiber-based heart valve. Once demonstrated feasibility, DSM and UMC Utrecht will jointly reach out to medical device companies to explore options for further development.

“DSM is pleased to make Dyneema Purity fibers available to the renowned team at UMC Utrecht. This technology will provide surgeons with a material that has the strength and durability to potentially endure the severe mechanical conditions that a heart valve leaflet is exposed to. We are dedicated to open innovation and seek opportunities to link our technology to innovative research on an ongoing basis. Through collaborative partnerships we can explore new ideas and create solutions that provide better outcomes for patients,” said Carola Hansen, Business Manager for Dyneema Purity fiber, DSM Biomedical.

With a team of internationally renowned heart and vascular surgeons, and researchers supervised by Gerard Pasterkamp, M.D., PhD., UMC Utrecht has clinical expertise on the latest developments in heart valve technology as lately applied by Jolanda Kluin, M.D., PhD and less invasive vascular treatments performed by Joost van Herwaarden, M.D., PhD.

“We believe that heart valves with scaffolding made from Dyneema Purity fibers have the potential to lead to a revolutionary new solution, giving those dealing with heart disease the benefit of a less invasive transcatheter heart valve replacement. Although we are in a very early feasibility stage and prototyping only, we believe Dyneema Purity fiber is a very interesting material to use as basis for this feasibility study.” said Principal Investigator Paul Gründeman, M.D., Ph.D., Division Heart and Lungs at UMC Utrecht.

“Typically, Dyneema Purity fiber has great potential in novel approaches to minimal invasive vascular surgical therapies because of its unique properties” said Frans L. Moll M.D., Ph.D., Department of Vascular Surgery at UMC Utrecht.

About UMC Utrecht

The University Medical Center of Utrecht (UMC Utrecht) is one of the largest public healthcare institutions in the Netherlands. With almost 11 000 employees, UMC Utrecht is constantly building on the provision of good healthcare services, based on the right people and knowledge. UMC Utrecht is a leading international academic medical center where knowledge of health, illness and care is generated, evaluated, shared and applied for the benefit of patients and society. UMC Utrecht is one of the participating centers in the NFU which is the Dutch organization for University Medical Centers. The NFU is the result of a merger of the Netherland’s university hospitals and medical centers.

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