Northwestern's Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute has recently enrolled first patient in ABSORB III, a clinical trial to compare the performance of Abbott's drug eluting Absorb Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffold (BVS) device with other traditional metallic stents.

The Absorb device, which includes a multi-link stent design, is made of a naturally dissolvable polylactide material which gets restored in the vasculature as a normal blood vessel.

Absorb BVS’s temporary structure allows it to dissolve over time leaving behind only two pairs of tiny metallic markers, which assist surgeons to identify the device location.

The ABSORB III, reportedly the first US clinical trial, will enroll approximately 2,250 subjects.

In Chicago, Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute is the first centre to enroll subjects in the ABSORB III trial.

The scaffold opens a clogged vessel and restores blood flow to the heart similar to the currently available drug eluting metallic stents in the market.

Northwestern Memorial director of interventional cardiology and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine associate professor Ricciardi noted since 1980s, these technologies have allowed many patients to avoid open heart surgery.

"While we’ve had great success with the current technology, once a stent is placed, it remains in the body forever. However, the stent support is really only needed for several months," Ricciardi added.