February 7, 2007
"A Drexel College of Medicine team is testing the power of magnets to eliminate some of the worries surrounding stents."
A Drexel College of Medicine team is testing the power of magnets to eliminate some of the worries surrounding stents.
These tiny wire mesh tubes are implanted in the heart arteries of millions of Americans.
While the drug-coated versions are better at keeping arteries open, studies show they may also encourage blood clots, and trigger heart attacks.
Zachary Forbes, Ph. D., says, "We can target drugs through nanoparticles, and for the life of the stent in the body, treating it as many times as necessary if any complications should arise."
The magnetic current would be strong only where medication is needed, but not elsewhere, to attract it to the right place.
Dr. Forbes: "The amount of drug the body sees as a whole is drastically reduced by our method."
Dr. Forbes is doing tests on a variety of stent materials, as well as a variety of drugs that could be delivered this way.
He's even thinking about using the magnetic technique beyond stents, to other implants, such as joint replacements.
He believes antibiotics could be easily delivered to the sites after surgery, to cut down on post-surgical infections.
To view Dr. Forbes interview on 6ABC News, please go to: