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CONOR MEDSYSTEMS/BIOTRONIK TO DEVELOP BIOABSORBABLE STENT.

Conor Medsystems, Inc., Menlo Park, Calif. and Biotronik AG, Bulach, Switzerland, have entered into a collaboration for the research and development of bioabsorbable drug eluting stent technologies. The new technology will combine Biotronik's unique absorbable metal stent (AMS) with Conor Medsystems' novel vascular drug delivery stent platform, enabling tailored drug release kinetics for the treatment of restenosis and other vascular disorders. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

"Through this exciting R&D partnership with Biotronik, we hope to develop what may be the first drug eluting absorbable metal stent platform," said Frank Litvack, M.D., chairman and CEO at Conor Medsystems. "This collaboration brings together Conor Medsystems' insight into next-generation drug eluting stent technology with Biotronik's absorbable metal stent materials to spearhead an important new vascular technology breakthrough and a potentially significant contribution to the field of cardiovascular treatment."

"We are delighted to have the opportunity to develop yet another innovative vascular drug delivery technology. This will go far beyond conventional stenting," said Dr. Claus Martini, managing director of Biotronik Vascular Intervention.

Conor Medsystems' stent platform, designed for use in vascular drug delivery applications, consists of hundreds of non-deforming reservoirs that house and protect the drug, providing up to six times the drug dose capacity compared to surface-coated stents. The reservoirs are the key to tailored release kinetics for controlled drug release and targeted delivery, including spatial and directional control. The reservoirs have the capability to release a broad spectrum of drugs and polymers -- including lipophilic and hydrophilic compounds and biologics. In addition, the Conor Medsystems stent can deliver multiple drugs with independent release rates and directionality. The company's novel COSTAR(TM) cobalt chromium paclitaxel drug eluting stent is currently under clinical investigation in multiple international clinical trials.

Biotronik developed its absorbable magnesium alloy stent (AMS) as an alternative to conventional metal stenting and to other absorbable polymer stents under development, which have limitations with recoil properties. The company's AMS was designed to benefit patients and physicians on several levels including treating patients with atherosclerosis who otherwise might not be candidates for cardiovascular stenting, and enabling re-intervention on stented vessels, a procedure that currently is not possible in the majority of cases. In addition, the company's AMS was designed for use with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in noninvasive cardiac imaging -- a growing alternative to angiography -- to detect vascular stenosis. Unlike conventional metal stents, the magnesium alloy does not interfere with magnetic imaging. Biotronik's AMS is currently in clinical evaluation for the treatment of vascular critical ischemia in below the knee atherosclerosis with plans for launch in 2005.

Biotronik

Biotronik is a European manufacturer of biomedical technology with a worldwide market presence. The company offers a complete line of products for diagnosis, treatment, and advanced therapy support in the areas of cardiac rhythm management, electrophysiology and vascular intervention. The field of vascular intervention consists of guide wires, balloon catheters and stent systems for coronary and peripheral applications. The company's revolutionary absorbable metal stent recently entered the clinical phase and is scheduled to be launched in mid-2005.

For more information, visit http://www.biotronik.com.

Conor Medsystems

Conor Medsystems, founded in 1999, is a pioneer in controlled vascular drug delivery. The company has developed novel stent and polymer technologies specifically designed for delivery of a broad spectrum of therapeutic agents. Conor Medsystems' proprietary technologies allow release profiles to be tailored to the requirements of a drug and enable the delivery of multiple compounds to various sites in the body.

Conor Medsystems is positioned to become a technical, clinical, and market leader in the emerging field of vascular drug delivery with next generation drug delivery stents. The company's initial focus is on the treatment of restenosis and vascular disease, a market expected to exceed $4 billion by 2006. Conor Medsystems is also exploring applications in peripheral vascular disease and additional indications where controlled drug release from a medical device is expected to provide therapeutic advantage.

For more information, visit http://www.conormed.com or call 650/614-4100 or visit http://www.biotronik.com.
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Publication:Biotech Equipment Update
Date:Jul 1, 2004
Words:672
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