The number of hip prostheses in the EU has risen steadily over the past ten years – most notably in Austria and Germany with 300 implants per 100,000 inhabitants. The frequency of aseptic inflammatory processes between bone and implant, accompanied with loosening of the prosthesis, has increased, resulting in a shortened lifetime of the hip replacement.
EVPRO – short for: Extracellular Vesicles Promoted Regenerative Osseointegration – aims to counteract the shortened lifetime and to reduce the risk of inflammation of hip revision prostheses. The eleven project partners from four countries intend to ensure mobility for elderly patients and improve their quality of life and well-being by diminishing problems associated with implanted joint prosthesis and by reducing the number and frequency of subsequent medical treatments. The partners expect that EVPRO's results lead to a significant decrease in aseptic loosening in joint replacement.
The objective of EVPRO is to devise innovative biologically active coatings for hip revision endoprosthesis, which are able to control inflammation at the biointerface of the endoprosthesis and promote bone regeneration. The EVPRO coating combines a novel bioinstructive, adaptive nano-functionalized degradable biomaterial homing extracellular vesicles incorporated in a non-degradable bone-instructive microporous and nano-roughened TiO2 surface. These coatings are applied at the interface between implant and inflamed tissue, to perceive inflammation and modulate it in a proportional, self-regulating manner. Additionally, they instruct bone forming cells, so-called osteoblasts, to migrate into the coating to improve osseointegration resulting in a better healing and an increased lifetime of the implant.
In the long term, researchers expect that the number of repeated operations to replace worn implants will decrease, having a direct positive impact on the duration of the necessary hospital stay and the prescription of expensive medication. The results of the EVPRO research project can thus support the European Union's objectives on active ageing in society and lead to significant improvements in the quality of life for hundreds of thousands of citizens in the EU and beyond.
Dr. Jochen Salber from the Clinic of Surgery of the UMC Knappschaftskrankenhaus Bochum; Hospital of the Ruhr-University Germany says: "The EVPRO technology is still at an early stage but it has the potential to revolutionize medical technology in implantology improving therapies for patients suffering from aseptic endoprosthesis loosening. In addition, other clinical areas suffering from high inflammation rates might also benefit greatly from the project results."
MEDICA-tradefair.com; Source: Fraunhofer-Institut für Produktionstechnologie IPT