First bioabsorbable drug-eluting stent approved

The first of a new generation of stents have been approved by European health authorities in early January 2011. This stent is fully bioabsorbable, leaving no trace, and allowing the coronary artery to resume its flexibility and natural movements with each heartbeat.

Read more about this from Abbott, the manufacturer of the stent:

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Antibiotic used on drug-eluting stents may lead to advances in heart disease and cancer treatment

RapamycinScienceDaily (Apr. 14, 2010) — Research led by T. Cooper Woods, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, and Director of the Molecular Cardiology Research Laboratory at Ochsner Clinic Foundation, has identified the mechanism of how a drug commonly used on stents to prevent reclosure of coronary arteries, regulates cell movement which is critical to wound healing and the progression of diseases like cancer.

The study is published in the April 16th issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

The antibiotic, rapamycin, is used on drug-eluting stents implanted during angioplasty because it is effective in preventing restenosis (re-narrowing or reclosure) of arteries. However, rapamycin can also prevent tissue from growing over and covering the metal stents, a critical part of the artery’s healing after angioplasty. Without this protective covering, blood clots can develop many months later, called late stent thrombosis. These clots can lead to a heart attack.

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Experts design elastic iron for surgeries, buildings

Fri, Mar 19 2010

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Researchers in Japan have designed a super-elastic iron alloy which they hope can be used in sophisticated heart and brain surgeries and even buildings in earthquake zones.

In a paper published on Friday in the journal Science, the researchers said the metal’s super-elasticity allows it to return to its original form and gives it additional properties, such as ductility and a change in magnetization.

The iron alloy’s stress level is about twice that of nickel titanium and it can be used to deliver stents, which are tubes placed in blood vessels to stop them from collapsing.

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