Medtronic Licenses Early Stage Stent Drug to Prevent Thrombosis
Medtronic has gained rights to ReVas, a drug development program based on novel targets of vascular inflammation, from Resverlogix, for use with drug-eluting stents to prevent thrombosis.
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Late stent thrombosis (LST) concerns associated with drug-eluting stents (DES) dominated sessions at the 2006 Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) annual conference, with additional long-term data presented on this topic. The general feeling expressed was one of relief that the expanded dataset presented at TCT showed the LST problem was not as bad as some had feared when the issue was discussed at the World Congress of Cardiology (WCC).
While the greater efficacy of drug-eluting stents (DES) compared to bare-metal stents is widely accepted, over the past year, data has continued to build showing that first-generation DES also have a higher late-stage in-stent thrombosis risk, a complication that can cause death 30% of the time, according to some estimates. The findings of these studies had some physicians at this year's World Congress of Cardiology calling for "an immediate halt to DES overuse." However, most conceded that additional randomized trials will be needed to fully understand the potential risks associated with these devices.
Medtronic has been a pioneer in drug/device convergence: creating products whose therapeutic benefit stems equally from the features of their drug and device components. Convergence represents one of the medical device industry's most promising opportunities. But getting past the cultural differences between medical device and biotech companies can be huge.