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Pioneer(R) Surgical Technology, Inc. Continues to Prove Science Behind PEEK-on-PEEK(TM) Technology for Motion Preservation Devices
Date:2/29/2008

New 'Wear Study' data to be unveiled at the 2008 Orthopedic Research

Society meeting in San Francisco, CA

MARQUETTE, Mich., Feb. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Pioneer Surgical Technology, in collaboration with RUSH University in Chicago, announces significant findings that wear properties of PEEK-on-PEEK (Poly-ether-ether-ketone) are not susceptible to the effects of accelerated aging. The study, "The Effect of Accelerated Aging on the Wear of PEEK for Use in Disc Arthroplasty," bolsters support for the long term durability of Pioneer's signature PEEK-on-PEEK design of disc arthroplasty devices.

Gamma sterilization in combination with in vivo use of Polyethylene (PE), commonly used in today's total joint and disc arthroplasty devices, is more susceptible to oxidation and accelerated aging than PEEK. Oxidative reactions can weaken the Polyethylene polymer and decrease the lifespan of motion preservation devices which may result in unnecessary revision surgery and significant patient risk. Technically challenging revision surgeries can lead to patient/surgeon dissatisfaction and could potentially drive up healthcare costs, over time.

"Motion preservation devices should have long term durability," according to Dr. Chip Bao, Vice President of Spine Development for Pioneer. Bao says, "These types of devices are being increasingly indicated for younger patient populations and should last a lifetime." Dr. Markus Wimmer of RUSH University stated, "A material pairing purely based on polymers allows new imaging technologies. PEEK has been shown to be a very biocompatible polymer. Most motion preservation devices on the market today combine metal on Polyethylene to obtain articulation. PE polymers are known to be susceptible to biodegradation. This research suggests that PEEK-on-PEEK is not."

Articulating PEEK-on-PEEK(TM) technology in the NUBAC motion preservation device is the most technologically advanced design in the industry. The NUBAC is not currently available in the US; it is an investigational device limited by Federal Law to investigational use. The NUBAC is commercially available in Europe and is distributed through Pioneer's wholly owned subsidiary Pioneer Surgical Technology, BV based in the Netherlands.

Dr. Wimmer is a noted tribologist and expert on the wear of polyethylene. Wimmer is the Orthopedic Research Society 2008 winner of the prestigious William Harris award for his research in metal-on-metal articulation.

About Pioneer Surgical Technology

Pioneer(R) Surgical Technology, Inc. is a dynamic medical device firm. The company's comprehensive portfolio of vertebral spacers, cervical plating systems, and MIS and Mini-Open Rod systems include notable trade names such as Contact(TM), IJAK(R), Clarity(TM), SlimFuse(TM), and Quantum(R). Pioneer entered the orthobiologics market with two acquisitions in 2007. Encelle(TM), Inc., developed E-Matrix(TM) for tissue regeneration. Angstrom(TM) Medica, Inc. is the first company to obtain FDA approval for a nanotechnology device -- NanOss(TM) -- hydroxyapatite bone void filler. The company's three divisions ... Orthopedic, Spinal and Biologic ... all work to produce state of the art, cost-effective solutions for surgical procedures that have proven difficult or problematic for both surgeons and patients. Pioneer employs more than 250 people worldwide.

Contact:

Qi-Bin (Chip) Bao, Ph.D.

Vice President of Spine Development

Pioneer Surgical Technology

906-226-4477 chipbao@pioneersurgical.com


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SOURCE Pioneer Surgical Technology, Inc.
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