A French team performs the first artificial heart implantation in the world
An artificial heart was implanted on Wednesday, 18th of December into a 75-year old patient who was suffering from terminal heart failure, by a team at the Georges-Pompidou Hospital in Paris. The patient is in “excellent condition” according to the doctors.
“This world premiere brings great pride to France, a pride that our country owes to the talents of innovation of its medical researchers, its hospitals and its industry”, said the Ministry of Health, Marisole Touraine.
The development of a fully autonomous artificial heart is the result of over 20 years of research by the teams of Professor Alain Carpentier, a renowned cardiac surgeon. The prototype, manufactured by the company Carmat, weighs 900 grams and is provided with electrical sensors and microprocessors to mimic closely the functioning of a normal heart. “If you see your loved one coming through this door, your Carmat heart will start to beat faster, just like a real one”, according to Professor Carpentier.
This outstanding medical performance is based on a collaboration between scientific research and the French economic ecosystem, which combines industrial and financial innovation, and government support (33 million euros from OSEO and 5 million research tax credits in 2013). The medical need is considerable, with around 100 000 people affected in Europe and in United States, for a potential market of several billion euros.