Acutus Medical Inc. appears to have solved one of the more vexing problems in cardiology, the sheer persistence of persistent atrial fibrillation (AF) despite treatment. In a study recently published in Heart Rhythm, the Carlsbad, Calif.-based company demonstrated that 73% of patients undergoing ablation using the new PVI and core-to-boundary guided approach experienced acute termination of AF after one procedure, compared to 10% of patients undergoing ablation with the traditional posterior wall isolation approach. At 12 months, 87% of patients remained free of AF without medications. The results improved on Acutus's Uncover-AF study using its Acqmap system.

Social media not ready for prime time as source of real-world evidence

The FDA’s May 4 webinar on patient data generated over the course of the product life cycle covered a number of topics, including the use of social media as a source of real-world evidence (RWE). The FDA’s Anne Hammer said, however, that while social media engagement has exploded over the past couple of decades, issues such as data duplication and verifiability will have to be resolved before patient engagement via social media can be relied upon as a source of RWE for regulatory purposes.

Pixcell hops on board the Soulbrain acquisition train

Soulbrain Holdings has acquired Pixcell Medical Technologies Ltd. as part of the company's shift into health care and in vitro diagnostics. Soulbrain has designated the bio-health care industry as its "engine for new growth." Pixcell makes a rapid point-of-care blood testing platform in line with Soulbrain's focus on miniaturized medical devices. Soulbrain's first foray in the space was the acquisition of Ark Diagnostics in 2018.

Archos sets up med-tech division in conjunction with French research labs

PARIS ‒ Archos SA reported setting up of a center of excellence in med-tech. They are working in close partnership with various technology transfer acceleration companies who finance innovative research lab projects in France. Their new division, Medical Devices Venture, is intended to help develop startups targeting the health care disciplines of the future that combine technology, machine learning and a platform for collaboration.

Adrenaline release immobilizes immune cell responses

Using advanced intravital microscopy to visualize immune cell movement within the tissues, investigators at the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, Melbourne have discovered that the neurotransmitter noradrenaline produced by the sympathetic nervous system causes a dramatic paralysis of immune cell movement. The authors show that noradrenaline released during stress alters blood flow in tissues that temporarily starves leukocytes of the oxygen that they need to move. Impaired leukocyte mobility contributes to poor immunity to virus infection, malaria infection and cancer in mouse models. The team reported its results in the April 28, 2021, online issue of Immunity.

Also in the news

908 Devices, Biobeat, Bio-Techne, Carta, Clarius, Cumulus, Dexcare, Flurotest, Intersect ENT, Ivenix, Ivwatch, Life Spine, Moleculight, Pentax Medical, Premier, Purigen, Santen, Sentinel Diagnostics, Smiths Medical, Standard Bariatrics