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New artificial heart valve could transform open-heart surgery

last modified Feb 22, 2021 12:43 PM
A new type of artificial heart valve, made of long-lived polymers, could mean that millions of patients with diseased heart valves will no longer require lifelong blood-thinning medication after valve replacement surgery.

The valve, called PoliValve, has been developed by scientists at the Universities of Cambridge and Bristol. The team’s latest in vitro results, published in the journal Biomaterials Science, suggest that the PoliValve can last for up to 25 years in patients, far longer than other types of replacement heart valves. In addition, a small pilot study in sheep showed that the valve is highly compatible with biological tissue. The researchers anticipate that the PoliValve can be tested in humans within five years.

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