NC A&T partners with medical research company
Greensboro, NC – October 24, 2013
GREENSBORO—Groundbreaking medical research is under way on the campus of North Carolina A&T University in Greensboro.
N.C. A&T is working alongside the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Cincinnati and Hannover Medical School in Germany with a mission to develop bioresorbable metal alloys.
A new partnership with California-based InCube Labs is pushing to commercialize the new product.
"Right now, every metal that goes into the body goes in with the notion that it's going to stay there forever, or it's not going to corrode," said William Wagner of the University of Pittsburg.
Wagner and a team of researchers have a new plan for implantable medical devices.
"One of the problems with implants is they can corrode too fast or they can corrode too slowly. With a smart implant, we corrode it when we want it to,” said Mark Schulz from the University of Cincinnati.
The team is creating screws and metal implants with materials, like magnesium which is found in items as common as a laptop.
"We're using very similar alloys to that, except they're designed so they don't have the toxicity and we select them for different properties," said Wagner.
Jag Sankar, Director of the Engineering Research Center for Revolutionizing Metallic Biomaterials at N.C. A&T, said the developments don't require the device to be removed.
"If you can imagine a staple, after surgery a lot people get staples, you could have staples that dissolve. After an orthopedic procedure, if you're left with screws and plates, in some cases they have to go back and do another surgery to remove them, well that costs a lot of money,” said CEO of InCube Labs Mir Imran.
InCube Labs has partnered with the team of researchers to get the product FDA approved and bring it to clinical trials, before eventually using it in the medical market. InCube Labs focuses on creating new medical therapies.
"Our expertise is in not only developing the products but taking them through clinical trials, FDA approval, reimbursement and launching the product commercially," said Imran.
The research is in its early stages, but the team hopes to have the product in a clinic trial within the next five years.