Published 3/1/2007

Tools and Technology Updates

New Joint Restoration Foundation announced

AlloSource (Centennial, Col.), a nonprofit provider of bone and soft-tissue allografts, as well as allograft skin for burn applications, and Community Tissue Services™ (CTS), a nonprofit provider of tissue allografts and skin grafts to surgeons for severe burn patients, have announced the formation of the Joint Restoration Foundation (JRF). The new company will be a nonprofit organization focused on processing technologies and the promotion of the beneficial uses of joint restoration allograft tissue, including fresh osteochondral allografts, tendons, and meniscus.

The JRF will oversee and coordinate the efforts of partners to produce quality allografts, which will be made available to surgeons and their patients nationwide through JRF. The partners will fund, through JRF, research and development projects that enhance graft safety, provide for new tissue applications, and are made available to the medical professionals and their patients. In addition, JRF will set and monitor quality standards.

VAC Freedom System receives Joint Airworthiness Certification

Kinetic Concepts, Inc., a global medical technology company with leadership positions in advanced wound care and therapeutic surfaces, announced that its VAC Freedom® System has been awarded Joint Airworthiness Certification (JAC) status by the US military. The certification program is a shared US Air Force-Army initiative and applies to specific US Air Force aircraft and US Army helicopters.

Devices submitted for JAC certification are subject to airborne feasibility testing under scenarios such as high altitude, rapid decompression, and fluctuations in temperature. The VAC Freedom System proved to be operable and safe during medical evacuation flights involving patients who have sustained severe and traumatic wounds.

Doncasters boosts capabilites in metal-on-metal technologies

Doncasters Medical Technologies (Oregon City, Oregon)has announced a further expansion in its technical capabilities in metal-on-metal resurfacing programs. It has boosted its manufacturing capacity for forging, casting, machining, and polishing by transferring nonmedical work undertaken in its Oregon (US) and Sheffield (UK) facilities to other sites within the Doncasters Group to create greater capacity for the medical business and a focused supply chain.

Following detailed metallurgical development and refinement of vacuum casting processes and collaboration with experts at Sheffield Hallam University in the UK, Doncasters Medical Technologies worked with pioneering surgeon Dr. Derek McMinn to develop the specialized metallurgy used in the Birmingham Hip Resurfacing system, which gained FDA approval in May 2006.

In addition to this advanced bearing surface technology, Doncasters Medical Technologies has also developed an integrally cast textured porous surface. This process has been extensively used on acetabular cups and is also applicable to other fixation surfaces such as tibial, femoral, and shoulder system components.

Doncasters supplies a long list of leading players in the medical industry, including Aesculap, Biomet, Corin, DePuy, Finsbury, Smith & Nephew, Stryker, and Zimmer.