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NIH funds support UAB joint replacement research
Date:7/20/2009

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. Newly announced National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding will expand the reach of ongoing University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) research into a unique nanostructured coating to improve the performance and longevity of total joint replacement components. The broadened UAB research opportunity is funded by a four-year, $790,931 National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant through the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS).

UAB's research, titled Bioengineering Research Partnership (BRP) in Total Joint Replacements, will explore next-generation technology to improve the service life of total joint replacements, which UAB researchers believe could dramatically cut the number of recurrent surgical procedures performed each year, said Yogesh Vohra, Ph.D., the BRP's principal investigator and director of the Center for Nanoscale Materials and Biointegration (CNMB) in the UAB School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

Vohra said the BRP opportunity will unite his UAB interdisciplinary research team with professionals at Smith and Nephew Inc., an international leader in the development of advanced medical devices. The company is known globally for its OXINIUMTM oxidized zirconium material for joint replacements.

"We have been researching our nanostructured multilayer diamond coating for a number of years inside our UAB facilities but there have been limitations to just how rigorous the testing could be," Vohra said. "The funding to partner with Smith and Nephew expands our research options because it offers us access to the company's resources and talent."

Among the benefits, Vohra said, the BRP allows access to Smith and Nephew's hip and knee simulators, which offer UAB researchers the most realistic testing conditions to date for their coating technology. Working with the multi-million dollar simulators should strongly indicate how well the team's nanostructured multil
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Contact: Andrew Hayenga
ahayenga@uab.edu
205-427-7423
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Source:Eurekalert  

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