December 2020

Oxford Road Corridor provides funding for the development of an improved design of arterial sheaths.

The need for better designed arterial sheaths for complex aortic procedures was identified by clinicians at Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust. The Oxford Road Corridor provided early stage funding for Lucid Group to develop a new effective design.

“This project is an excellent example of how partners on the Oxford Road Corridor are working together to address unmet healthcare needs – linking academic, clinical and commercial expertise to discover innovative solutions.”

Professor Jackie Oldham

Professor Jackie Oldham, Director of Strategic Initiatives at Oxford Road Corridor, brought people together to lead an investigation into the development and licensing potential of an arterial sheath for complex aortic procedures, after a need for this equipment was uncovered by clinicians at Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT). The arterial sheath, a 3D- printed medical device, was invented by Professor Ferdinand Seraccino-Inglott, Consultant Vascular and Endovascular Surgeon at MFT, and Mr Kamran Khan, Clinical Research Fellow in Vascular Surgery at MFT, with the support of Lucid Group.

In 75% of aortic procedures, positioning and assembling stent components can necessitate the introduction of three or four devices simultaneously via one incision. When more than one device is used, there is a higher risk of blood loss from an ineffective seal which can elevate the risk for the patient and extend recovery time. A sheath that provides an effective seal for multiple devices would simplify operating procedures for clinicians and improve outcomes for patients. This life-saving innovation may be hugely beneficial for the NHS in regard to patient safety, post-operative recovery, lesser need for critical care stays and minimising the need for blood transfusions.

Dr Katherine Boylan, Head of Innovation at MFT, said: “MFT is at the heart of the Oxford Road Corridor, meaning we can work closely with medical device companies and other organisations, to ensure patients have access to the latest innovations more quickly. We’re really excited to be working with Lucid Group and other partners across the Corridor, to further refine the design and testing of the arterial sheath, and hopefully speed up its adoption across MFT and the wider NHS.”

The project has had funding provided by Oxford Road Corridor, and is being developed by Lucid Group, who are based at Manchester Science Park. The new prototype arterial sheath design, that is manufactured using a special 3D printed plastic, will continue to go through vigorous stages of testing before advancing to trials involving patient surgeries to ensure its safety, usability and value for clinicians, patients and the wider health community.