State researchers embark on development of biodegradable stent for digestive systems

Park Sae-jin Reporter() | Posted : October 5, 2020, 16:34 | Updated : October 5, 2020, 16:34

[Gettyimages Bank]

SEOUL -- A state research body will develop a biodegradable stent with a drug delivery system. No surgical operation is required as it will disintegrate inside the body over time. The biodegradable stent will be cheaper than conventional ones made of plastic or metal.

A stent is a tube that is normally made of plastic or metal. It is inserted into an anatomic passageway to keep it open. The stent is mainly used to restore and maintain the flow of blood. For digestive systems, plastic stents close after a certain period of time while metallic ones have the ability to stay open for a long time. However, metal stents have to be removed surgically.

Korea Textile Development Institute (KTDI) said in a statement on October 5 that it will use a government fund to develop a high-performance biodegradable stent by the end of 2025. "We will acquire the core technology for medical fabric and contribute to strengthening South Korea's competitiveness in the global fabric industry," a KTDI official was quoted as saying.

The institute's biodegradable stent can deliver drugs and slowly discharge drugs contained in the main material over a long time to prevent complications. It would conduct clinical research before acquring approval from the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety.

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