Government grant pumps Vascam`s commercialisation

VasCam Pty Ltd has been awarded a Queensland Government Innovation Start-up Scheme (ISUS) grant which will help progress its technology to the clinical trial stage.

The start-up company was established by The University of Queensland’s main technology transfer company, UniQuest Pty Ltd, to commercialise a technology which could potentially allow patients to grow their own replacement blood vessels.

VasCam Executive Chairman, Craig Estwick, said the ISUS grant would greatly support the company’s commercial activities.

“The ISUS grant will assist VasCam to raise the capital necessary for clinical trials as well as do further market research and analysis to clearly identify our path to market,” said Mr Estwick.

VasCam’s technology is based on the potential for the human body to produce replacement arteries.

The company’s researchers are developing a tubular device, which when inserted into the abdomen encourages tissue to form around it. Once the tissue has completely formed around the tube, the tube is removed and the new tissue can be inserted as an arterial graft. Over a period of time, the graft becomes indistinguishable from a native blood vessel.

UniQuest Managing Director David Henderson said VasCam was established because of the critical medical need for replacement arteries which are viable long term.

“VasCam’s researcher team, lead by Professors Julie and Gordon Campbell, is developing a system to allow people to grow blood vessels to any size required for any application, in their own body,” said Mr Henderson.

Currently, VasCam is conducting preclinical trials to develop and refine a safe and effective scaffold prototype device for human use. When these studies are completed, the company hopes to conduct initial tests of the device in a small trial involving patients with end-stage renal disease.

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