Oxford researchers are developing tiny mesh tube devices to treat brain aneurysms

por Lauren Dubinsky, Senior Reporter | January 06, 2016
Alzheimers/Neurology Cardiology European News Medical Devices
Courtesy of Oxford Endovascular
Tiny metallic mesh tube devices to treat patients with brain aneurysms are currently under development at Oxford Endovascular, an Oxford University spinoff company. The company has raised £2 million from the investment company Oxford Sciences Innovation PLC, Parkwalk Advisors and other private investors to put the device through clinical trials.

If left untreated, a brain aneurysm — a bulging, weak area in the wall of an artery that supplies the blood to the brain — could rupture and lead to intense pain and bleeding, which may result in serious brain damage or death.

“Existing devices are limited by the time it takes to place them accurately into the patient and with certain complications that may arise,” Mike Karim, CEO of Oxford Endovascular, told HCB News. “We hope to develop a product that is easier to place and that reduces complications as well as providing greater efficacy.”

The device has a special laser-cut metal alloy which, when deformed, goes back to its pre-deformed shape. It’s placed into the catheter during surgery and inserted into the brain and opened up into a tiny mesh tube that fits into the blood vessel, diverting blood away from the aneurysm and allowing it to heal.

Historically, surgical clipping — which requires the creation of an opening in the skull to place a clip across the aneurysm — has been a option for treating brain aneurysms. Another treatment method is endovascular coiling, in which a catheter is inserted into a blood vessel over the hip and navigated to the vessels in the brain. Coils are placed into the aneurysm and prevent blood from entering.

Going forward, the Oxford researchers are aiming to complete development and begin manufacturing the device, and then test it in clinical trials to eventually apply for regulatory approval in major markets.

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