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Development of the first fully biocompatible, soft actuated heart: combining in situ tissue engineering and soft robotics

Development of the first fully biocompatible, soft actuated heart: combining in situ tissue engineering and soft robotics

Objective

The Hybrid Heart consortium envisions to develop and bring to the clinic soft biocompatible artificial organs. These will consist of a soft robotics shell with actuators (‘artificial muscles’) and sensors, enabling completely natural motion. The inner lining and structures will be made by in situ tissue engineering (TE), ensuring biocompatibility of blood-contacting surfaces.
As the first step, the consortium will develop the Hybrid Heart, which can completely replace a patient’s heart in a procedure similar to a heart transplant, to provide a cure for heart failure, which affects ~23 million people worldwide. Currently, patients with end-stage heart failure either receive a heart transplant, if available, or long-term mechanical circulatory support, which causes severe complications. To achieve the ambitious goal of providing a permanent cure for these patients, the participants will, in parallel, develop the components of the Hybrid Heart: 1) a soft elastomeric robotics shell containing actuators and sensors, 2) scaffolds for in situ TE of inner lining, valves and vessels and 3) a wireless energy transfer system. These components together will form the full Hybrid Heart, which will be soft, adaptable, wireless and fully bio- and hemocompatible. Both functionality as well as biocompatibility of the Hybrid Heart will be shown in a Proof-of-Principle study in the chronic sheep model at the end of the project.
The Hybrid Heart project will be carried out by an interdisciplinary group of (academic) researchers and high-tech SMEs, with experience in cardiac surgery, TE, soft robotics and engineering. The technology underlying the Hybrid Heart is applicable to a range of soft robotics-based artificial organs, including the bowel, lung, or muscle structures (limbs). Replacing an entire organ with bioinspired robotic elements, TE biocompatible surfaces, artificial sensors, and an external power source allows for an off-the-shelf therapy for patients with organ failure.

Coordinator

Academisch Medisch Centrum bij de Universiteit van Amsterdam

Address

Meibergdreef 9
1105az Amsterdam

Netherlands

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 705 000

Participants (5)

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STICHTING NEDERLANDSE WETENSCHAPPELIJK ONDERZOEK INSTITUTEN

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 396 250

SCUOLA SUPERIORE DI STUDI UNIVERSITARI E DI PERFEZIONAMENTO SANT'ANNA

Italy

EU Contribution

€ 454 375

TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITEIT EINDHOVEN

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 585 000

DUALIS MEDTECH GMBH

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 451 250

XELTIS BV

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 443 675

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 767195

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 November 2017

  • End date

    31 October 2022

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.2.1.

  • Overall budget:

    € 3 035 550

  • EU contribution

    € 3 035 550

Coordinated by:

Academisch Medisch Centrum bij de Universiteit van Amsterdam

Netherlands