PV-COAT: A prosthetic valve with a bioactive surface coating to reduce the prevalence of thrombosis
Patrizio Lancellotti, researcher at the GIGA, obtains an ERC Consolidator Grant to develop his research in the field of cardiac prostheses. His PV-COAT project aims to develop a new type of prosthesis to improve the safety and durability of artificial heart valves.
ore than 100 million people worldwide suffer from valve heart disease, affecting one or more of the four heart valves and causing shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness and fainting spells. If severe valve disease is not treated properly, the chances of survival decrease, especially in the elderly. The only effective treatment is heart valve replacement, which can involve some risks and lead to revision surgeries. What can be done to improve the safety and durability of artificial heart valves?
People who have had artificial heart valves implanted generally require life-long anticoagulant treatment, which often triggers adverse reactions. In recent years, advances in polymer science have opened new avenues to improve the biostability and hemocompatibility of artificial cardiovascular devices. But to date, there is no polymer-coated prosthetic heart valve.
The PV-COAT project, defended by Patrizio Lancellotti, aims to produce a nanogel PEG coating loaded with various antiplatelet and anticoagulant agents. This new technology would adapt to all prosthetic heart valves currently available on the market and could be applied to all heart devices, including pace-makers and implantable defibrillators, as well as intravascular devices such as catheters. With these promising results, bioactive coated prosthetic valves could replace the previous generation of cardiac valves in the near future, reducing patient inconvenience and costs to the healthcare system.
Patrizio Lancellotti is a professor at the University of Liège and, since October 2017, head of the Department of Cardiology at the University Hospital of Liège. He is the current President-elect of the Belgian Society of Cardiology. His main research interests are in heart valve disease and imaging to elucidate the mechanisms behind the progression of the disease. Patrizio Lancellott made headlines in February 2018 for implanting the world's smallest pace-maker in the heart of a patient, weighing only 2 grams, compared to 24 grams of a traditional pacemaker. A passionate cardiologist, he combines clinical work and research to develop new diagnostic and therapeutic methods with the ultimate goal of improving patients' lives.
ERC Consolidator Grants
ERC Grants are major instruments deployed by the European Research Council to fund research projects in Europe. The procedure, which is extremely selective, selects only the best researchers and very high-level research projects, combining boldness and competence to tackle new research avenues that, if successful, could substantially enrich knowledge.
There are 5 types of grants: Starting Grants, Consolidator Grants, Advanced Grants, Synergy Grants and Proof of Concept
ERC Consolidator grants are designed to help researchers who wish to establish their research team and continue to develop a career in Europe. The program supports newly created independent research teams that excel in a specific area.