Microvascular Obstruction (MVO) of heart tissue is proven to be an independent predictor for heart failure and death. Heart failure is a major contributor to the rising health care costs in the world. The CorFlow technology enables detection and treatment of MVO while the heart attack patients are still in the catheter laboratory (cathlab) immediately following reopening of the larger epicardial arteries with a stent. CorFlow is the only company which offers a combined diagnostic and therapeutic technology to address this large unmet medical need. Around 50% of all acute heart attack patients develop MVO which translates into around 200,000 patients annually.
The Innosuisse project "Translational development of a medical device to treat microvascular obstruction in heart attack patients" is in cooperation with Prof. Dominik Obrist (University of Bern, ARTORG Center of Biomedical Engineering Research), Prof. André Bernard (University of Applied Sciences Buchs NTB), Prof. Sebastian Kozerke (University and ETH Zurich, Inst. for Biomedical Engineering), Dr.med.vet. Nikola Cesarovic (University Hospital Zürich, Division of Surgical Research) and Prof. Marco Valgimigli (Bern University Hospital, Inselspital).The project lead Prof. Obrist said: "We are grateful that Innosuisse recognised our vision for the technology's potential to be moved to the next stage, by providing funding for the project at this pivotal stage. With the financial contributions from Innosuisse and CorFlow, the project will allow us to further deepen our understanding of the coronary microcirculation. The unique, interdisciplinary research consortium brings together unique capabilities in magnetic resonance imaging, circulatory modelling, non-clinical research and clinical trials which will be instrumental to bring the CorFlow technology into the hands of clinicians and to impact patient care".Prof. Valgimigli, who is the principal investigator of the First-in-Man (FIM) clinical trial to be conducted in Switzerland, commented: "Microvascular obstruction is an unmet need for acute heart attack patients and we have to date not had tools to promptly diagnose it and treat it in patients after stent placement. We are excited to join the consortium and take the lead on the clinical implementation of the CorFlow technology".Clinical trials to start in 2019In addition to the Innosuisse grant, CorFlow is contributing substantial funds for the continued technical and clinical development of the first generation CorFlow Controlled Flow Infusion (CoFI) console and rapid exchange (RX) catheter. The dossier for the FIM clinical trial called MOCA I (Microvascular Obstruction with the CoFI System Assessment) has been submitted for approval to Swiss authorities. The Company targets enrolment of the first patient in the MOCA I trial in 2019 and will provide regular updates on the progress of the study. Jon H. Hoem, CorFlow's CEO and co-Founder, commented: "The continued and substantial support from Innosuisse is very welcome and the project will form the basis for a Swiss expert centre studying the human microcirculation. Further non-clinical and clinical research are needed to deepen our understanding of the human microcirculation and CorFlow is pleased to be a part of these efforts. We look forward to continue and expand our cooperation with scientists world-wide who share our passion for a deeper understanding of effective treatments of microvascular dysfunction which affects hundreds of thousands of patients every year".
(Press release)Picture: The CorFlow Team, from left to right: Oliver Bludau, R&D Manager, Caroline G. Hoem, Office & Finance Manager, Jon H. Hoem, CEO & co-Founder, Esther Gerteis, VP Clinical, Blathnaid Feldman, VP QA & RA