Implantation with clinical version rescheduled for change of animal

Press release, 19 May 2022

Realheart is conducting a series of implantations in sheep this spring to test the newly developed clinical version of its artificial heart. However, in preparation for the first surgery, it was discovered that the sheep made available at the lab did was not suitable for the surgery. The first surgery was therefore postponed until early June to prepare a new animal.

The clinical version of the Realheart® TAH – the version that will eventually be used in humans – is now at the animal lab in Belgium where it is undergoing sterilisation pending surgery.

It was during a preliminary test operation in a virtual environment that the team discovered that the intended animal was not suitable to undergo the surgery. Virtual implantation techniques are widely used prior to artificial heart treatment in humans, precisely because we all look different inside. This also applies to animals. Virtual technology is also used as part of Realheart's testing and in the collection of data for future animal and human clinical trials.

''This is very frustrating for all of us in the team who have been eagerly awaiting this implantation, but we are also grateful that we were able to identify this now, rather than during surgery. Through these careful preparations, we want to optimize the chances of successful results, and now we look forward to getting started in a couple of weeks,'' said Ina Laura Perkins, CEO of Realheart.