Elixir places first DESolve drug-eluting stent in patient

Elixir Medical's DESolve drug-eluting stent.--Courtesy of Elixir Medical

Elixir Medical placed its first DESolve drug-eluting stent in a patient in Germany since gaining its CE mark last year.

The stent is designed to deliver the anti-proliferative drug novolimus and restore blood flow to the heart. But unlike metallic stents, DESolve breaks down in the artery over the course of one year, the company says.

DESolve is made from a poly-L lactide-based polymer. Elixir says the dissolving stent can move more naturally than a metallic stent. And the delivery of novolimus gives it an anti-inflammatory edge.

In October, the device notched impressive results from a 12-month study with only a 5.7% rate of major adverse events.

The drug-delivering stent gives Elixir a platform to compete with Abbott's ($ABT) Absorb stent, a similarly dissolving device that hit the global market in 2012. Elixir boasts that its device outperforms Abbott's, though, as the only one to increase vessel size in 6 months and hold them open for a year and a half while degrading harmlessly.

"The acute performance of the scaffold demonstrated excellent stent apposition to the vessel wall and low recoil, and the patient is doing well," said Christian Hamm at the University Hospital Giessen in Germany in a statement.

The company also hopes to gain a foothold in the traditional stent market, giving Medtronic's ($MDT) Resolute a run for its money.

- here's the release

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