• Aethlon Medical(San Diego) reported new data related to the safe use of the Hemopurifier treatment technology in animal studies. Researchers documented that the Hemopurifier, which has been developed to treat individuals infected with HIV, hepatitis C (HCV) and bioweapon threats, including smallpox, was able to treat for extended periods of time without any adverse events. Aethlon has previously published pre-clinical data related to the rapid clearance of HIV, HCV and smallpox-related viruses from human blood.

• ATS Medical (Minneapolis) said its ATS Open Pivot Heart is the subject of a study published in the June issue of the Annals of Thoracic Surgery. The study authors concluded that the ATS Open Pivot Heart Valve, when implanted in the mitral position, demonstrated low rates of bleeding, thromboembolic complications and other valve-related events. The study also noted: “The design of the ATS Medical Open Pivot hinge promotes particularly rapid leaflet closure with very low regurgitation and quiet valve closure sounds. In practice, the valve is inaudible, and past studies indicate that patients appreciated the quietness of this valve, which contributed considerably to their comfort.”

• DOBI Medical International (Mahwah, New Jersey) said that 10 U.S. sites are currently participating in the clinical trial studying its Dynamic Optical Breast Imaging (DOBI) system, known as the ComfortScan system. The ComfortScan system is a non-invasive, nonionizing device that uses light-emitting diodes and gentle external pressure to identify angiogenesis, the growth of new blood vessels, in the breast. The company said that it plans to increase the number of participating sites to at least 20. The clinical trial, which began in 4Q04, is the final element of the company’s pre-market approval application to the FDA. The study is designed to analyze ability of the ComfortScan system, as an adjunct to mammography, to assist physicians in making a more accurate diagnosis of an identified breast lesion.

The Hospital for Special Surgery (HHS; New York) said the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has awarded it a patent for a new type of shoulder joint prosthesis design for the glenoid component, aimed at improving stability while maintaining fixation. U.S. patent No. 6,875,234 covers a design that reduces the risk of future dislocation or artificial shoulder component loosening, two common problems with existing products. The design involves the glenoid component and features two radii of curvature, decreasing the likelihood of dislocation. The design can be used with the various materials used in replacement shoulders, including metal or polyethylene. A member of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System and an affiliate of Weill Medical College of Cornell University, HSS provides orthopedic and rheumatologic patient care at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital and at NewYork Weill Cornell Medical Center.

• Med-El (Research Triangle Park, North Carolina), an implantable hearing technology firm, said that it has received approval to distribute its cochlear implant system, the PulsarCI100, in Canada. The company said its new system is the first to incorporate I100 technology, a durable and power-efficient electronics platform with wafer-thin layers of sophisticated electronics arranged on a single miniaturized chip. Dr. Lorne Parnes of London Health Sciences Center (London, Ontario), the first to implant a Pulsar device in Canada, said the new implant’s “thinner and longer electrode design allows for a less traumatic and deeper insertion, which translates into more potential for some natural hearing preservation and more precise stimulation of lower, important speech frequencies.”