Foldax has announced the successful first-in-human use of its biopolymer Tria heart valve in surgically replacing a diseased mitral valve. The first case was performed by David Heimansohn, at Ascension St. Vincent Hospital, Indianapolis, USA, as part of a US early feasibility research study.
“We are excited to be the first centre in the world to implant the innovative Tria mitral valve as part of this research study. In this first-in-man procedure, we saw an immediate improvement in the functionality of this patient’s heart valve once the valve was in place,” said Heimansohn. “Since it has been designed to be a more durable artificial valve that may not require lifetime anticoagulation therapy, it is hoped that Tria will be proven effective through this research study for patients with mitral disease, who are often much younger than patients with other valvular diseases.”
“We thank Dr Heimansohn and his skilled team at Ascension St. Vincent Hospital for their commitment to advancing cardiovascular medicine by successfully performing the first-in-man Tria mitral valve procedure,” said Foldax CEO Frank Maguire. “This milestone continues to build upon the clinical evidence supporting Foldax’s Tria valves, which includes the ongoing Tria aortic valve study encompassing several patients who have celebrated one year with their implants and are doing well. Our transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVI) continues its rapid development path and will give us both surgical and transcatheter approaches in our family of heart valves. Foldax intends to revolutionise the heart valve replacement market by largely solving the durability, quality of life and manufacturing issues that have vexed the clinical community and industry for decades.”
The Tria valves incorporate the proprietary biopolymer—LifePolymer—with innovative valve designs intended to resist calcification, withstand stresses and strains without failure, and restore patient quality of life without lifelong use of anticoagulants. Tria is also the first and only heart valve to be robotically produced, which is possible due to its polymer leaflets that can be consistently manufactured with precise thicknesses and are designed to achieve a valve with predictable performance that lasts a lifetime.
The Tria heart valve is considered investigational in the USA and is not available for commercial sale in the country.