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Medical devices – biocompatible protective coatings

Manufacturing Group | August 20, 2014

Blended products that include therapeutic coatings of different materials are making waves in the industry.

Medical devices – biocompatible protective coatings

Mountain View, California – Innovations will surge in the protective coatings industry by 2020, giving rise to a range of improved biocompatible and durable coatings that enable implant devices for use in orthopedic, orthodontic, and cardiac applications. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) are creating new standards for upcoming industry trends in protective coatings, further encouraging patent developments.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Innovations in Protective Coatings for Medical Devices, finds that increasing biocompatibility is a major driver for implant coatings. Successful implant coatings enhance biocompatibility and promote healing processes by minimizing tissue rejection and better anchoring implants to the targeted area.

Passivation – accomplished by coating implant material with polymer layers – is an upcoming area of research in coatings for biomedical applications. Passivation techniques have been successfully used in development of coatings and biomaterials to manufacture the most biocompatible implants.

"This is particularly important in cases of load-bearing implants with need for mechanical strength," said Technical Insights Research Analyst Sanchari Chatterjee. "Developing specialized coatings and techniques that prevent aggressive cell growth and aid the production of desirable endothelial cells rather than smooth muscle cells will also be crucial."

However, protective coatings require sophisticated raw materials that incur high costs. For instance, low availability of titanium, coupled with demand from industries such as aerospace, industrial, and recreation make it an expensive resource.

Developing novel coating materials has been a trend in the industry for the last two years. For example, use of spider silk, which is hypoallergenic, biodegradable and usable as coating for implants or as a drug carrier in pharmaceutics, is being researched as a coating for silicone implants.

In the meantime, combination products such as therapeutic coatings of different materials are creating a stir in the industry. Coatings that use solutions as surface treatments too are gaining momentum. For instance, bone implant surfaces enriched with biomolecules can accelerate the bone healing process.

"Research institutes have joined forces with industry players to evaluate a wide variety of biomolecules such as growth factors, bioactive proteins, enzymes and non-viral genes," added Technical Insights Research Analyst Vivek Ninkileri. "As is evident, stakeholder initiatives, especially collaboration among research institutes, academia, and medical device manufacturers will play a major role in the advancement of protective coating technologies."

Innovations in Protective Coatings for Medical Devices, a part of the Technical Insights subscription, analyses key innovations in protective coatings for medical devices to distinguish the chief developments and challenges in the market. Opportunity strategy evaluation, technology roadmap, impact analysis, and R&D development strategies are also discussed. Further, this study includes detailed technology analysis and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.

Source: Frost & Sullivan

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