Admedus just put a 3D heart valve device into a live sheep for the first time
Health & Biotech
Testing heart implants in live sheep? Say what? ... Pic: Shaun the Sheep
Medtech Ademedus has successfully implanted its 3D aortic heart valve into a live specimen with animal trials set to commence on sheep and calves.
The biotech (ASX:AHZ) has a range of “bioscaffold” projects underway including one called CardioCel — which is used to repair congenital heart deformities — as well as the 3D heart valve known as a Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement.
It has also been involved with developing infusion products like syringes as well as immunotherapy treatments.
On Wednesday Ademedus confirmed it has started animal trials with the implant of the heart valve into a live specimen.
The shares were up slightly to 26c today — though still a fair way off their one-year high of 40c achieved in April.
Admedus is working on a study titled “Experimental assessment of the Admedus valve – ovine model of aortic valve replacement”, which will use sheep to look at the safety and feasibility of the 3D moulded heart valve.
The company has previously run lab tests of the technology away from live specimens, finding the valves remained functional after 400 million cycles, which would equate to around 10 years of human life.
The animal testing period will start this week and is expected to continue for five months, with the company anticipating moving on to larger animals, like calves, in weeks to come.
Admedus says its tech is a potential game changer for patients in a treatment sector worth $3.5 billion a year.
However, it was just months ago chief executive Wayne Paterson was telling Stockhead the company was facing challenges last year.
In February, the company said it was on track to break even this year but that it was on “life support” when he took control of the business in March 2017.
Analysts Stockhead spoke to at the time about the company’s future painted a rosy picture.
At the end of the March quarter, Admedus made $6.7 million from customer receipts and burned $4.7 million. Its products in the Adapt suite, which included biomaterial scaffolds like CardioCel, continued to achieve “solid” revenue performance, the company said.
The business had $2.8 million in the bank at the end of March 2018.