MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Patients with aortic valve disease now have a vastly improved way to repair their existing valve, thanks to a newly FDA-approved invention by WVU Heart and Vascular Institute surgeon J. Scott Rankin, M.D.

The HAART 300 Aortic Annuloplasty Device

The HAART 300 Aortic Annuloplasty Device, manufactured by BioStable Science & Engineering, Inc., is the first commercially available internal annuloplasty device designed for aortic valve repair.

“Dr. Rankin has truly helped usher in an entirely new way of repairing aortic valves,” Vinay Badhwar, M.D., executive chair of the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, said. “He has created a new class of heart operation that could potentially save thousands of patients who currently are otherwise treated with artificial heart valves. Dr. Rankin’s global contributions are a shining example of the mission of WVU Heart and Vascular Institute and West Virginia University.”

The aortic valve, located between the left ventricle and the aorta, is a one-way valve that opens to let blood be pumped out of the heart and into the rest of the body. When that valve becomes diseased, it may leak, making the heart work harder to send oxygen throughout the body.

Annuloplasty is a procedure to reconstruct the frame, called the annulus, of a heart valve, and it’s the preferred surgical treatment for valve diseases because of its proven benefits over valve replacement. The HAART 300 Aortic Annuloplasty Device is designed to re-size, reshape, and stabilize the annulus of the aortic valve. Dr. Rankin’s device is the first annuloplasty device designed for the aortic valve.

“This device is designed to standardize aortic valve repair and make reconstruction of the patient’s own valve quicker, simpler, and more reproducible,” Rankin said. “Valve repair is now the standard for the other heart valves, and this device provides the exciting option of extending the benefits of autologous reconstruction to the aortic valve as well. Our formal clinical trials began in Europe over five years ago, and the results have been excellent. This technique has the potential of improving outcomes and restoring quality of life for many patients, both here in Morgantown and around the world.”

Due to the technical challenges and higher rates of recurrent disease with existing aortic valve repair techniques, this new device has the potential to become the surgical standard in aortic valve repair.

Due to the technical challenges of existing surgical techniques, aortic valve repair is performed routinely at only a limited number of heart centers around the world. This new device has the potential to become the surgical standard in aortic valve repair and make valve repair a more accessible option for patients.

The device has been approved and implanted in Europe for several months and will be available to select United States heart centers, including the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, in the summer of 2017.