The 6 Most Innovative MD&M West Suppliers

Posted in Contract Manufacturing Services by Chris Newmarker on February 1, 2016

Here are the six MD&M West Innovation Prize finalists. Make sure to check them out at MD&M West.

Qmed Staff

Contract development work on a macular degeneration device, an efficient laser cutting and machining, a coating innovation for braided catheters, a flexible medical device OS, and fully automating the jacketing of guidewires—these are the six innovations that received the most attention from Qmed readers, who helped select the MD&M West Innovation Prize finalists.

The Qmed survey of readers helped inform editors as they whittled down the list of 10 semifinalists. Join Qmed editor-in-chief Brian Buntz on Tuesday, February 9, for a tour of all six finalists' booths at MD&M West in Anaheim, CA; tour participants will select the winner of the MD&M West Innovation Prize.  

Here are the finalists: 

1. Product Creation Studio (Booth #1977)

LumiTheraHelping to Develop a New Age-related Macular Degeneration Device

Over the past couple of years, Product Creation Studio (Seattle) has been working with a company called LumiThera to develop a device called the LT-300 that uses low-level light therapy (also called photobiomodulation) to treat age-related macular degeneration. The LT-300, currently being used in clinical trials, delivers precisely dosed LED lights to an AMD patient's retina. The LEDs are meant to stimulate the mitochondria in the eye, potentially halting the degenerative effects of AMD and even improving the condition of the eye. Product Creation Studio and LumiThera claim the LT-300 could prove more effective than other AMD treatments such as vitamin intake and eye injections.

2. Marubeni Citizen Cincom (Booth #3278)

MarubeniMaking Laser Cutting and Machining More Efficient

Marubeni Citizen Cincom (Allendale, NJ) has created a single machine platform that can perform both laser cutting and conventional machining, increasing efficiency by enabling multiple medical device manufacturing operations to be completed in a single step. Developed in 2014, the Laser System L2000 is a 400-watt fiber optic laser that is mounted in the tooling zone of a Citizen Cincom Swiss style lathe. Marubeni Citizen Cincom has the laser interfaced to the machine control. Cutting paths, offsets, and laser settings can be edited within the part program. What were once multiple medical device manufacturing operations can be completed in a single step, creating a more efficient process.

3. ProPlate/Professional Plating Inc. (Booth #438)

A Coating Innovation for Braided Catheters

ProPlate (Anoka, MN), which was a Minnesota Medtech Week Innovation Prize semifinalist for its Vizi-Band metal coating process, also is touting its Torq-Lok braided catheter coating innovation. Torq-Lok, which hit the market in 2014, is a patented process that atomically bonds metal directly to each braid pic, fusing them together as one at each crossing. Preliminary testing of Torq-Lok compared to non-coated braids demonstrated a range of 30–66% greater torque response, a 66% increase in torque to failure, and a 90° twist increase, according to ProPlate. Torq-Lok allows for the braid pic count to be reduced, which in turn reduces material costs and production time for the braid manufacturers.

 

4. SUSE (Booth #661)

A Highly Flexible Medical Device OS

Enterprise Linux company SUSE (Cambridge, MA) says its SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 Service Pack 1, introduced in December, boasts innovations including an updated user interface, improved operational efficiency, and accelerated innovation through support for all recent hardware from IBM and Intel. Says SUSE: “It is an OS embedded in medical devices that allow medical devices to run constantly second by second, minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day, week by week, month by month, and year after year. … Our OS allows medical devices to run efficiently and securely on many different types of medical device platforms: imaging, laboratory equipment, patient monitors, etc.”

5. Syneo and Gimac (Booth #2213)

Fully Automating the Jacketing of Guidewires

Delivered in 2015, the Syneo Dynamic Guidewire Jacketing System fully automates the jacketing (over extrusion) of discrete guidewire lengths for the medical device industry. Syneo (West Palm Beach, FL), working together with with Gimac di Maccagnan Giorgio, a leader in Medical Microextrusion Equipment out of Castronno, Italy (the company is coexhibiting with Syneo at MD&M West at booth #2213), created a system with true closed loop motion control for ultra-precise indexing of material. Syneo claims the system, coupled with its guidewire pick and feed technology, turns a difficult, labor intensive task into a fully automated process. A user can load hundreds of nitinol or stainless-steel cores, typically with distal ends centerless ground with a fine taper, into a the input bin of the feed system. The system will pick and feed the parts continuously through the extrusion cross head. The system preheats cores prior to extrusion to promote adhesion, measures the input and output diameter of parts, precisely adjusts core velocity through the cross head to control coating thickness, cuts the parts to to separate the discrete lengths, inspects the outside diameter on 100% of the wires, and bins the material pass/fail based on laser micrometer feedback.

6. Proto Labs (Booth #3415)

An Automatic Interactive Quoting System for Prototyping

Quick-turn manufacturer Proto Labs (Maple Plain, MN) will be touting its ProtoQuote—an automated interactive quoting system that had its latest software version released last year. Medical device engineers can upload their 3-D CAD model and receive free design for manufacturability analysis and real-time pricing information within hours. Proprietary software and compute clusters analyze the 3-D CAD model to generate an interactive price quote and design analysis that requires very little human interaction. ProtoQuote enables OEM engineers to make needed prototype modifications early and often. Developers can iterate, get premarket approvals, pass clinical trials, and launch products to market faster.

Learn more about cutting-edge medical devices at MD&M West, February 9–11 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, CA. 

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