University awarded new KTP to develop software for knee replacement surgeries

University awarded new Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with 3D Metal Printing (3DMP), specialists in manufacturing precision-engineered medical devices.

3DMP flagship product

3DMP’s flagship product (TOKA), is a patient specific solution for a form of knee preserving surgery known as High Tibial Osteotomy (HTO).

Currently TOKA offers device personalisation based on individual patient anatomy, matching their geometry (shape). However, 3DMP want to increase this personalisation by also meeting the individual biomechanical loading requirements. Following discussions with orthopaedic surgeons, this has been identified as the optimal way to provide individualised treatment.

However, this is challenging for 3DMP as complex calculations are required to establish the individual mechanical loading experienced per patient.

The newly awarded KTP will develop specialised software to calculate the personalised mechanical loading as well as incorporating the patients’ anatomy to fully personalise the patients’ treatment.

Professor Richie Gill, Chair of Healthcare Engineering in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Co-Deputy Director of the Centre for Therapeutic Innovation at the University of Bath says:

"This is a very exciting opportunity for translating our biomechanics and computational expertise to enable completely personalised surgical solutions to be generated to treat patients with musculoskeletal disease."

Alberto Casonato, Managing Director at 3D Metal Printing (3DMP), says:

"Not only will the KTP increase the competitiveness of TOKA, our flagship product, it will also significantly reduce the time and the R&D costs of expanding the product portfolio of our personalised musculoskeletal treatments."

Ashima Sangwan, Innovation Advisor for SETsquared Bath, part of the global #1 enterprise partnership who was involved in developing the KTP, says:

"The combination of an ageing population and an inactive lifestyle has seen an increasing demand for knee replacement surgeries, particularly in younger working age population (those aged 40 to 65 years), and is projected to double in the next ten years. The funding for this new KTP is very much welcome to further develop disruptive technology, making these procedures shorter, more accurate and financially viable."

Dr Geraint Jones, Knowledge Transfer Adviser with KTP delivery partner KTN says:

"This KTP will expand the reach and effectiveness of the TOKA product, by transferring the expertise required to embed biomechanical loading considerations into the personalised design of knee replacements. This will have a significant impact in terms of growth for the company, and the academic team will be able to realise the impact of their pioneering research in this domain. This also is a great opportunity for the KTP associate, with excellent commercial, technical and social impact challenges."

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) are funded by Innovate UK to help businesses to improve their competitiveness and productivity through the better use of knowledge, technology and skills within the UK knowledge base.

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