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Progress in the Development of Mechanical Circulatory Support Devices for Children to be Presented at International Heart and Lung Transplant Meeting
Date:4/14/2011

SAN DIEGO, April 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Promising new devices for mechanical circulatory support of children with heart defects or heart failure, and related research, will be revealed this week at the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) 31st Annual Meeting and Scientific Sessions. An update from the Pumps for Kids, Infants and Neonates (PumpKIN) Program will be presented during the Meeting in San Diego.  PumpKIN is supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), a branch of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Despite rapid advances in the technology of sophisticated mechanical devices for adults, the options for infants and children in need of mechanical circulatory support are very limited. Close to 1,800 children with congenital heart defects die each year in the United States alone, and 25 percent of the 36,000 babies born with these malformations require invasive treatment within the first year of life.  Currently, there are no FDA-approved devices designed specifically for patients younger than five-years-old, and the available options are even more limited for newborns and infants up to two-years-old.

"Tremendous advances have been made in assist devices for adults, but there really are no devices for infants and children. The driving force of this program is encouraging development of such devices and sharing of information among developers," said J. Timothy Baldwin, PhD.  Dr. Baldwin is Deputy Chief, Advanced Technologies & Surgery Branch and Program Director, Basic and Early Technology Research Program in the Division of Cardiovascular Sciences at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and the program officer who supervises the PumpKIN consortium.

Acknowledging this need, the NHLBI awarded four contracts in January 2010 to fund preclinical testing of these pediatric devices, including both miniature ventricular assist devices (VADs) and integrated com
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SOURCE International Society for Heart & Lung Transplantation
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