Smart Textiles expands blood vessels 

 In collaboration with innovators Erney Mattsson and Torbjörn Lundh, Smart Textiles has developed unique solutions for two different medical application areas. One of them is a kind of bandage designed to allow anyone to apply it correctly in order to stop a bleeding and the other a knitted stent made in a material and a design that will prevent scar formation in constricted blood vessels. Funding by GöteborgBIO will now help the researchers optimise the innovations.

What is unique about the bandage is the combination of a textile material and a visual indication system.
– A bandage intended to stop the bleeding by compressing the blood vessels must be applied in a specific way and with a certain amount of pressure. Without proper training, it may be difficult to succeed. This bandage, however, will allow anyone to apply it correctly, explains Erney Mattsson, who is a professor and a vascular surgeon.

– With this funding we will be able to optimise the function of the bandage or PressCise, which is our name for it, and have it CE-marked, patented and commercialised. If everything goes according to plan, the product may be ready for market introduction within a year.

Foreign objects cause scar formation

Erney Mattsson and Torbjörn Lundh also hopes to have the knitted application for expanding blood vessels – the stent – to reach the market in a year. The prototype has been knitted in the Knitting Lab at the Swedish School of Textiles with a special kind of metal thread and the innovators are just about to test a thread that is smoother and thus easier to undo.
– Today, stents are normally inserted into constricted blood vessels and left there. Foreign objects in the body will cause formation of scar tissue. Because of this, 30% of the patients who have undergone bypass surgery to open constricted blood vessels suffer another blockage within a year. This new kind of stent will allow the performance of a range of new and much smaller surgical operations in the gastro-intestinal  or urinary tracts or in connection with lung tumours.

Although Erney Mattsson and Torbjörn Lundh’s solution with knitted stents will follow established surgical procedures, the stent will also be able to undo – that is, pulled out and removed after it has served its purpose.

– The metal thread allows the stent to assume the correct shape and provides it with the proper strength. The knitting technique is what makes it possible to pull it out again in the form of a thread.



More money brings the market closer

The amount the innovators will receive from the BIO-X project, which is run by GöteborgBIO, has still not been settled. Two million SEK will be divided between three projects, two of which are signed Erney Mattsson and Torbjörn Lundh.
– It’s really a great opportunity for us, receiving this additional funding. Our products show great potential in the medical world, says Erney Mattsson.

Footnote: The PressCise project is also carried out in collaboration with the Incubator in Borås. The project has just been granted 110 000 SEK for project management by Innovationskontoret.

Text and photo: Therese Rosenblad