Cardiac surgeon Ulf Kjellman, who recently joined Realheart's medical advisory board, has now agreed to become the company's Chief Medical Officer (CMO). Kjellman, who has many years of experience in advanced cardiac surgery, will be clinically responsible for the company's preclinical and clinical studies.
"I feel incredibly confident that Ulf Kjellman takes over as medical director and thus assumes clinical responsibility. I will continue as head of innovation with room to focus even more on the continued development of Realheart's entire planned product line, mainly a smaller version of Realheart suitable for women and smaller patients," said company founder Azad Najar.
Ulf Kjellman has over 35 years of experience in cardiac and thoracic surgery. His experience includes a deep involvement in initiating and developing programs for heart transplantation and heart pump treatments at several hospitals, both in Sweden and in other countries, most recently at the National Guard Hospital Riyadh in Saudi Arabia.
“It was an easy decision for me to take on the role as Chief Medical Officer at Realheart. Realheart's TAH is an extremely interesting concept and a paradigm shift in artificial hearts. As a product, it fills a gap in the care of heart failure patients with the potential to save tens of thousands of lives within a decade," said Ulf Kjellman.
Kjellman was one of the first to implant both HeartMate 2 and HeartMate 3, after CE marking. (left ventricular assist devices developed by Abbott). He was also the cardiac surgeon who performed the first implantation of the SynCardia artificial heart in Sweden and Scandinavia in 2008. Kjellman has published several scientific articles on cardiovascular diseases in general and on heart pumps specifically. Thanks to his professional experience, Ulf Kjellman has a large network of contacts among potential customers, suppliers, and partners in Sweden, Europe, and the Middle East.
“We are extremely happy and proud that Ulf Kjellman chooses to step into the role of Chief Medical Officer. Although his expertise has been available to us for some time, it is now even clearer what an important role he will play in our continued development. Dr Kjellman will be a very valuable addition to the management team, where he brings extensive experience in cardiac surgery and transplantation. This in turn will be of great importance for our future clinical trials when patients will receive Realheart® TAH," said Ina Laura Perkins, CEO of Realheart.