search dollars into regenerative medicine and stem cell technology to treat various musculoskeletal maladies. Zimmer, for instance, is collaborating with ISTO Technology Inc. on a Phase III
clinical study to evaluate the efficacy of engineered juvenile cartilage to repair damaged knees. The randomized, controlled clinical
trial will involve 225 patients at up to 25 centers in the United
States who will help researchers determine whether ISTO Technology’s DeNovo ET Engineered Tissue Graft is better at treating
damaged knee cartilage than traditional methods.
Smith & Nephew, meanwhile, made a similar high-profile investment in biological technologies earlier this year with the January
spinoff of its Biologics & Clinical Therapies operation and the February introduction of a new hip replacement system to the U.S. market.
The biologics unit will be owned by global life sciences investing firm
Essex Woodlands and will operate under the new name Bioventus
LLC. Under terms of the deal, Essex Woodlands will own 51 percent
of Bioventus while London, United Kingdom-headquartered Smith
& Nephew will retain a 48 percent stake in the joint venture.
The Biologics & Clinical Therapies division is one of three
global units at Smith & Nephew. Revenue has more than quadru-
pled over the last six years, going from $52 million in 2004 to $223
million in 2010. Its focus on less invasive treatments for muscu-
loskeletal disorders has resulted in the development of Durolane
Hyaluronic Acid (available in Europe and Canada but not yet in
the United States) and Exogen, a bone healing system that uses
ultrasound to heal fresh fractures up to 38 percent faster than tra-
ditional methods. The unit’s Exogen technology also can effec-
tively treat non-healing fractures.