Promise for Chemical Renal Denervation in Treatment-Resistant Hypertension - February 4, 2014
So, a few short weeks later, and there is still a palpable sense of shock in the air following the chain of events that was kicked off by Medtronic’s Symplicity HTN-3 study results. We predicted at the time that companies with alternative technologies might start popping their heads above the parapet, and so it seems is the case. Already we’ve seen the ultrasound ablation of the target nerves touted by ReCor being helped along the way by being awarded its CE mark last week.
And now it’s over to the chemical renervation boys at Ablative Solutions, Inc. (ASI) to announced that it has completed a significant round of financing to fund its unique technology platform.
Hypertension treatment still “game on”
ASI has developed the Peregrine System™, which it says delivers a chemical treatment to the outer layer of the renal artery, where the sympathetic nerves reside. This can be achieved with great precision in a procedure which ASI has tagged PeriVascular Renal Denervation (PVRD™).
The procedure has reportedly demonstrated highly effective denervation in pre-clinical studies, with no collateral damage to the artery, leading to the company now engaging in early clinical evaluations which will no doubt target hypertension.
So why might it work?
Well, the principle remains the same, and there could well be nothing wrong with the principle. Extensive favourable clinical data from open as well as endovascular procedures suggests that what ASI calls “overactive” sympathetic nerves that lie around the renal arteries, can have their signals interrupted to good clinical effect. If this can be controlled in order to selectively target nerve pathways, then the ASI team confidently asserts that renal denervation will deliver clinical value to patients with drug-resistant hypertension. No doubt the claims rest on whether this procedure is more likely to be effective than the less accurately targeted approach employed using energy-driven systems, whether RF, or presumably, for that matter ultrasound.
“ASI’s technology is unique and we believe will overcome some of the shortcomings that have been seen recently in RF-based renal denervation devices,” said Steven Almany, MD, Medical Director at BioStar Ventures and an Interventional Cardiologist at Beaumont Health Systems.
So there you have it. It doesn’t sound like ASI are about to pull the plug on their development work…far from it. That could mean there’s life in the old RDN dog yet as a hypertension treatment.