Massachusetts-based medical device major Boston Scientific Corporation ( BSX) has joined hands with Japanese medical equipment manufacturer ASAHI INTECC to develop an advanced fractional flow reserve ( FFR) guide-wire. The alliance also aims at improving the key features of Boston Scientific's RotaWire Atherectomy Guidewire.
Despite this aspiring news, Boston Scientific's share price dropped 0.3% to eventually close at $12.60 yesterday.
Fractional flow reserve ( FFR) is a guide wire-based procedure that can accurately measure blood pressure and flow of blood through a specific part of the coronary artery. It is defined as a fraction of the normal blood flow in an individual's coronary artery compared to the maximum achievable blood flow in the same artery.
The FFR market is currently witnessing a double-digit growth rate and is widely viewed as the emerging field in interventional cardiology that exceeds $250 million globally. FFR guided percutaneous coronary intervention ( PCI) has been found to be cheaper and more effective as it reduces one-year major adverse cardiac events ( MACE) rates in heart patients.
RotaWire Atherectomy Guidewire
The RotaWire Atherectomy Guidewire is a unique 0.009" wire which forms a part of the market-leading Rotablator Rotational Atherectomy System. It is used in treating calcified lesions in coronary artery disease patients.
Boston Scientific designed the Rotablator Rotational Atherectomy System for improved percutaneous use in the peripheral vessels of those heart patients who suffer from occlusive atherosclerotic disease and are acceptable candidates for endovascular procedures.
The Joint Venture
The joint venture aims at creating an instrument which will improve the procedure of FFR, compared to other FFR wires available in the market. The jointly innovated FFR wire will be designed for use with Boston Scientific's POLARIS Multi-Modality Imaging System – which is used for capturing intravascular imaging.
The project also intends to combine medical instruments manufactured by ASAHI INTECC with Boston Scientific's RotaWire Atherectomy Guidewire to deliver an advanced version of the latter. This reflects Boston Scientific's continued focus toward enhancing its products for better treatment procedures of complex coronary diseases.
Both organizations have expressed their enthusiasm regarding this joint project. The mission is to create truly differentiated medical devices, by leveraging their technologies. With the collaboration, it is expected that the market will soon witness more advanced interventional cardiology instruments for improved patient outcomes.
Boston Scientific expects to commercially launch both these specialty wires in 2015.
Currently, Boston Scientific carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks in the Medical Products industry include ICU Medical, Inc. ( ICUI), AtriCure, Inc. ( ATRC), and Abaxis, Inc. ( ABAX). While ICU Medical carries a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Abaxis and Atricure hold a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) each.