Osaka Medical College, Fukui Warp Knitting Co. Ltd. and Teijin Ltd. have announced that their joint project to develop a long-lasting regenerative patch for cardiac-repair applications has been selected for support under a Japanese government program aimed at promoting collaboration between the medical and industrial fields. The program was launched by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) this year.
The patch is expected to combine bioabsorbable and non-bioabsorbable polymers. It will incorporate Teijin’s expertise in polymers and technologies and Fukui Warp Knitting’s technologies for warp knitting, or zigzag knitting, along the length of the fabric. The aim is to develop an innovative patch featuring a strong, expansive structure suited to cardiovascular surgeries, as determined by Osaka Medical College.
The goal of METI’s new program is to support advances in the medical device industry by incorporating Japan’s world-class manufacturing technologies to develop innovative new medical devices. Osaka Medical College, Fukui Warp Knitting and Teijin contribute medical technologies advancement by basic materials development in pediatric cardiac operation treatment to develop and provide universal medical materials through the integration of research outcomes and Japanese manufacturing technologies.
Cardiac patches are widely used to repair heart tissue during cardiovascular operations. Biomaterials derived from bovine and equine tissue and non-absorbable polymer polytetrafluoroethylene are used in existing patches. The use of biological materials presents safety and handling problems, such as sterilization and preservation, as well as quality deterioration after long use. Current non-absorbable polymers do not achieve the expansion property required for long-term use with beating, growing hearts, resulting in the need for repeated surgeries to replace the patches.