Knee osteoarthritis is one of the leading causes of disability worldwide. Loss of meniscus tissue in the younger years can accelerate this disease, leading to complaints such as severe chronic knee pain, stiffness and immobility. Many patients finally end up with a total knee replacement. The Dutch orthopedic startup ATRO Medical has the mission to create a solution for the long, painful period before total knee replacement.
A durable meniscus prosthesis can serve as a new shock breaker in the knee, reducing bone to bone impacts and as such relief pain in the knee joint. An implant for the inner side of the knee joint is currently in clinical research after ten years of development. However, a solution for the outer knee compartment is still missing. Since forty percent of complaints are apparent in this so-called lateral compartment, many patients would benefit from it.
The consortium of ATRO Medical, the Swiss company Samaplast and the Orthopaedic Research Laboratory (ORL) of the Radboud university medical center receives over € 800,000 EUROSTARS funding as part of a total investment of € 2 million to rapidly change this situation. The team is committed to develop a new meniscus prosthesis for the outer knee compartment and have it ready for a clinical trial within just two years’ time. Both the durable solution for the outer knee compartment and the short development time would be unique in the orthopedic society.
The ORL has been involved in meniscus research for many years as biomechanical expert and was part of the team developing the IP for this innovation. Samaplast is specialized in injection molding of high-precision and medical grade products out of plastic. ATRO Medical is a spin-off from the Radboud university medical center and DSM Biomedical and focuses on the design of durable meniscus prostheses. These three parties together have the required expertise to bring the new meniscus prosthesis to life with EUROSTARS funding.
EUROSTARS supports international innovative projects led by R&D performing SMEs such as ATRO Medical, that help improve the daily lives of people around the world. This EU program aims to bring increased value to the economy, higher growth and more job opportunities.
About ATRO Medical
ATRO Medical is a spin-out from DSM and Radboud University Medical Center with offices in Nijmegen and Oss (NL). The company builds on the knowledge developed in the Public-Private Collaboration
BioMedical Materials (BMM) that started in 2010 with a consortium of universities, companies and financial support from the Dutch government. The collaboration between the clinical, biomechanical and polymer experts has led to the development of the TrammpolinÒ Meniscus Prosthesis and the foundation of ATRO Medical in 2016. More information can be found on www.atromedical.com.