The Renal Exprés home peritoneal dialysis system receives the prestigious Swiss Technology Award 2007. The prize was handed over in Bern by Swiss officials and represents a significant recognition for the technology offered by the Renal Exprés product developed in Switzerland.
A total of 17 Companies received the Swiss Technology Award as recognition for the High Technology aspect of their product and potential to significantly expand in the international markets.
“This Prize re-enforces the high technology aspect of our Renal Exprés home peritoneal dialysis system and the contribution of high level Swiss Engineers and Technicians to its successful achievement. It is also an important symbol of how high technology disappears in end-user simplicity and patient safety” says Frédéric Neftel, President and CEO of Debiotech. “We are extremely proud of bringing such a unique product to the market and contribute to the image of Excellence and Quality which has always been at the heart of Swiss Products”.
“This cycler in combination with a personal computer software program is a novel approach in the field of peritoneal dialysis therapy”, says Hans-Gerd Evering, Manager Renal Division. “This development program was initiated for a new interpretation of user needs in focussing on patients requirements, patients home environment, medical staff requirements and quality of peritoneal dialysis therapy. The current development result consists of a very small and light weight cycler and an innovative mathematical optimization software program for PC’s”.
The APD (Automated Peritoneal Dialysis) cycler itself demonstrates the consequent translation of Human Factor requirements into improved device operation functions and an industrial device design to increase patient home acceptance. “Technical features such as disposable insertion, integrated fluid warming, functional operations, and graphical user interface, supported by voice messages, are designed to improve and to secure patients treatments at home during day and night time”, says Didier Vecten, Project Management. This cycler is currently the smallest and most light-weight device of its class. Usability and device operation are improved by simple, but efficacious technical solutions. “Automated disposable priming and air separation are included, and time consuming fluid warming procedures are eliminated by a novel integrated fluid warming system”, added by Pierre Thiebaud, Process Engineering. Therefore, this cycler will allow the patient a flexibility, which can drastically increase his quality of life.
Additionally, this cycler offers an interface system to optimize the medical prescription with fluid exchange recommendations for variable cycle times and applied fluid volumes. This novel feature is to allow a tailoring of the therapy to the individual patient and his medical needs even on a daily basis, and should therefore become more appealing to both patients and nephrologists.
“The mathematical optimization software program is focusing on peritoneal dialysis therapies and is contemplating novel treatment regimens with dynamic exchange profiles. More precisely, based on iterative numerical techniques, a new mathematical model and computer simulation environment have been elaborated to predict the kinetics of individual injection-extraction patterns, hence providing an optimization tool for the different PD techniques and facilitating the use of more elaborated therapeutic options. This approach could help by adding more flexibility to peritoneal dialysis prescription and is aimed to enhance the removal of toxins”, says Paolo Zunino, Head of the algorithmic development team at EPFL.
The mathematical optimization software program itself consists of several functional elements. A first element allows the nephrologists to individually characterize the natural dialysis membrane function of the patient. In a second step, a prescribed treatment regime can be used to simulate “online” an expected outcome, and various prescription parameters can be modified and applied to predict improved treatment results. Finally, based on the mathematical iteration program, optimized treatment parameters can be calculated and analyzed finally in comparison to the achieved treatment results after performing.
Dr. Frédéric Neftel says "It is fantastic to believe that this software program is aimed at improving the efficiency of a medical therapy by direct use of mathematical optimization, applying specific patient dedicated treatment regimens based on the patient’s own specific characteristics. The mathematical model under development will be able to provide novel fluid exchange recommendations, with variable cycle times and volumes, aimed at improving the way Peritoneal Dialysis is performed today. We are also extremely proud to work with Prof. Alfio Quarteroni, who is one of the world’s leading Applied Mathematicians, and his outstanding team of mathematicians at the EPFL"
The APD cycler and the PC optimization software program are working together in using a variety of communication technologies, which allow individual prescription regime downloads in the patient’s home environment and the remote treatment result data transfer to allow data analysis and further prescription optimization by the nephrologists. The graphical user interface for the mathematical optimization program is designed to offer a PC software program, including patient data base, graphical and numerical displays, and a self teaching feature to fulfil the requirements for “ease of use”. Therefore, this computer software program and its graphical user interface are useable as a promising software “tool” for computer beginners and experts.
As a prize holder, Debiotech S.A. has been invited to represent Switzerland at the Medica Exhibition in Düsseldorf in 2007, the leading Medical Device exhibition in Europe.
Debiotech S.A., based in Lausanne, Switzerland, specializes in the research and development of innovative medical devices in the field of implantable and external drug delivery systems, using mechatronics and MEMS, dialysis, diagnostics, and imaging devices (www.debiotech.com). Debiotech has numerous exclusive collaboration agreements with leading companies in the medical device and pharmaceutical fields.
The EPFL was founded as an engineering school 150 years ago, and became a Federal University in 1969. Today, it is one of the two leading scientific and technological universities in Switzerland fostering innovative business creation and technology transfer initiatives. The EPFL has a long experience in numerical simulation for scientific and engineering applications, in areas ranging from turbines to plasma physics and fusion, atomistic and molecular simulations to atmospheric pollution modelling, and automotive simulations to aeronautics. Collaboration with the industrial, economic and scientific environments is a long-standing tradition at the EPFL. From the first computer mouse to methods for decoding DNA a thousand times faster, the EPFL is a unique place of innovation and competence in Europe.
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