Blueacre Technology has just secured a role in a €4.5m EU research project developing next-generation surgical devices with eight other companies from Europe.
Openmind – part of H2020 – is the name of the new EU-funded project, with Dundalk-based Blueacre initially starting on the development of guide wires, which play a role in minimally invasive surgical procedures.
Guide wires can be used in cardiac interventions, with stenting and valve replacement greatly improving the survival rate of people with cardiovascular disease.
The whole Openmind project is aiming to create an actual supply chain of customised medtech devices, resulting in the ability to order specialised pieces in smaller batches, much like that of off-the-shelf alternatives.
It is developing these devices using fibre-reinforced plastics, which offer multi-modal compatibility for X-Ray, CT and even MRI.
Many state-of-the-art minimally invasive devices contain metals or metal pieces that are not compatible with MRI scanning machines.
“This specialised area of medical device manufacture has tremendous potential to improve the efficiency of interventional surgical medicine,” said Blueacre MD David Gillen.
“By making it easier to design and produce metal-free minimally invasive medical devices, the project could lead to significantly improved diagnoses and treatment of cardiac disease and reduce the €45 billion annual cost of lost productivity in the EU associated with it.”
Cardiovascular image via Shutterstock