The National Institutes of Health's (NIH) General Medical Sciences division has awarded $909,165 Phase II small business innovation research (SBIR) grant to Healionics to conduct preclinical studies on its STARcuff anti-infection technology.

The STARcuff, which is made up of STAR Biomaterial, is designed for the treatment of catheter-associated infections caused while performing hemodialysis procedures.

Healionics chief technology officer and research project principal investigator Andrew Marshall said catheters loaded with active antimicrobial agents or antiseptics are a controversial option for chronic dialysis patients due to the serious threat of microbial resistance.

"STARcuff is an attractive approach because it can potentially provide long-term protection against infection without any active agents," Marshall added.