Diagnostic imaging  

New MRI technology allows imaging inside vascular stents

15 April 2005

Rochester, NY, USA. Biophan Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB: BIPH), has announced results from testing of the company's patented technology that will enable magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) within vascular stents, allowing physicians for the first time to assess the health of stented arteries by means of non-invasive MRI technology.

Stents are used to expand, and keep open, blood vessels that have narrowed as a result of coronary artery disease. They are one of the most successful-and rapidly growing-medical devices in use today, and have been implanted in millions of patients worldwide to help ensure healthy blood flow. Coronary stents are a multi-billion dollar market. Current stent technology presents certain significant diagnostic limitations that have been solved by Biophan's proprietary technology.

"Current stents are safe for use with MRI, particularly when patients are allowed a period of time after implantation before receiving an MRI, but are not MRI-compatible, and thus cannot be clearly imaged with MRI systems," said Dr. Michael Friebe, CEO of Biophan-Europe. "This is an important distinction, because it means that a patient with a stent can safely have an MRI procedure performed for another indication, such as a knee injury, but the MR image in the region around and within the stent is negatively affected by the implant. No current stent on the market allows visualization of blood clots or restenosis within the stent. Biophan's proprietary resonator technology can solve this problem, enabling an entirely new method of evaluating patients after stent implantation."

Currently, evaluation of restenosis within a stent requires an additional interventional procedure-either intravenous ultrasound or an angiography procedure involving the infusion of a potentially toxic contrast agent combined with imaging under X-ray. Both of these procedures require the insertion of a catheter and guidewire into the patient. Biophan's technology to enable MR imaging within a stent would allow a non-invasive diagnostic procedure to provide similar data, eliminating the need for catheterization of the patient, exposure of the patient to ionizing radiation to obtain the X-ray image, and exposure of the patient to contrast agents. The Biophan procedure would allow for safer, less invasive and less costly evaluation of this patient population.

The technology revealed today employs the Company's "active" MRI solutions that use proprietary resonant frequency circuitry to enable superior visualization within an MRI. The Biophan-Europe division, based in Germany and formerly known as AMRIS GmbH, developed the resonance circuit technology and is a leading innovator of medical devices and technology solutions for MRI, in which Biophan recently acquired a controlling interest.

"Biophan is currently working on combining Biophan-Europe's resonance technologies with Biophan's nanomagnetic thin-film coating technology to enable the production of improved, lower-profile stent devices. We believe this will ultimately provide the ideal solution for the stent industry," said Mr. Weiner.

The technology is demonstrated with actual MRI images, and illustrative graphics, in a slide presentation on the Company's website. To view the presentation, please visit http://www.biophan.com/presentations/MRIImage.ppt.

Mr. Weiner added that Biophan has recently achieved significant progress in the establishment of relationships with manufacturers of several medical devices. "I am pleased to have reached the agreement we were seeking with a preferred partner, achieving fair value for our technology. We look forward to announcing the specifics as soon as we are authorised to do so."

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