Orthocell (ASX:OCC) has found a new use for its CelGro tech – anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries.

The ACL is a major stabilising ligament in the knee. Once it is ruptured, it cannot be healed it must be replaced and recovery takes several months.

Currently the most common surgical repair is to replace the ACL with an artificial one grafted by harvesting tendon from patient’s hamstrings.

But now early pre-clinical results have shown that Orthocell’s CelGro collagen rope can replace hamstring grafts for ACL reconstruction and has superior biomechanical properties.

The CelGro collagen rope and an ACL repair using it (Pictures: Orthocell)

Orthocell promised full results of the study by the March quarter of 2020. It also announced it had won a United States patent for this purpose, to last until 2035.

“There are currently no off the shelf solutions that mimic the human ligament to enable the optimal repair of ACL injuries,” managing director Paul Anderson said.

“The CelGro collagen rope addresses this problem, designed to augment ACL reconstruction without the need to harvest the patient’s hamstring tendon.

“We are extremely excited by the potential of this technology.”

Shares went ballistic in early May when early results from a trial of CelGro in patients with damaged nerves showed that the technology helped them regain sensation.

In October, Orthocell reported that CelGro was helping restore some functions to quadriplegic patients.

Shares were up only slightly this morning, but are up nearly 400 per cent since early May.


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In other ASX health news today:

Medical cannabis stock Althea (ASX:AGH) is entering the German market having signed an MOU with local distributor GmbH. The company anticipates the first shipments to arrive in Germany in the first half of 2020. Since Germany legalised cannabis in 2017 the market has grown and is estimated to reach over $1 billion by 2022.

Med-tech Proteomics International Laboratories (ASX:PIQ) has secured CE Mark certification for its PromarkerD test. PromarkerD assesses the risk of diabetic kidney disease in patients with Type 2 diabetes. Managing director Richard Lipscombe said CE Mark certification was an important milestone and reflected the strength of the company’s underlying data.