2nd Levacor patient also recovered and leading normal life at home
OAKLAND, Calif., June 4 /CNW/ -- World Heart Corporation (Nasdaq: WHRTD,
TSX: WHT), a developer of mechanical circulatory support systems, celebrates
the first explant anniversary of the first Levacor VAD patient. This
67-year-old man is enjoying an excellent quality of life after 85 days of VAD
support enabled his heart to regain its function (Bridge-to- Recovery).
The second Levacor patient's course mirrors the first and he is doing
well nine months after device explant. Dr. Antonis Pitsis, cardiovascular
surgeon, Director of the Thessaloniki Heart Institute, and Principal
Investigator of the Levacor clinical feasibility trial said that: "These
patients' recovery of natural heart function while supported by the Levacor
VAD has been remarkable. This device, with its wide range of operation,
supported our protocols for recovery of the natural left ventricle extremely
well. Most important is the high quality of life achieved by recovery."
Dr. James Long, a leader in the mechanical circulatory support field,
participated in the clinical training and implantation of the Levacor VAD in
Thessaloniki. He remarked that: "The initial success of this device is an
exciting achievement and illustrates its capacity to support recovery of the
failing natural heart. The U.S. Clinical Trial Committee and our clinical
colleagues are looking forward to introducing this technology to American
heart failure patients via an upcoming clinical trial."
Mr. Jal Jassawalla, WorldHeart President and CEO, commented that, "We are
pleased to have demonstrated the capability of the Levacor VAD. Based on the
unique device design and the initial clinical experience in Greece, we
anticipate that the upcoming U.S. trial will demonstrate the clinical benefits
of this advanced technology."
About the Levacor VAD
The Levacor is a next-generation rotary VAD. It is the only bearingless,
fully magnetically levitated implantable centrifugal rotary pump with clinical
experience. An advanced, continuous-flow pump, the Levacor uses magnetic
levitation to fully suspend the spinning rotor, its only moving part, inside a
compact housing. The proprietary levitation technology employs a unique
arrangement of magnetics expected to provide optimal system simplicity and
reliability. In contrast to pumps with blood-immersed mechanical or
hydrodynamic bearings, full magnetic levitation eliminates wear within the
pump as well as dependence on blood properties for rotor suspension, and is
expected to provide improved blood compatibility by allowing greater
clearances around the rotor and more idealized flow patterns across a wider
range of operation. The Levacor VAD has been designed with a high safety
profile and robust range of operation to address the needs of current and
future heart failure patients.
WorldHeart is a developer of mechanical circulatory support systems with
leading next-generation technologies. The Company is headquartered in
Oakland, California, USA with additional facilities in Salt Lake City, Utah
and The Netherlands. WorldHeart's registered office is Ottawa, Ontario,
Any forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the
safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995
and include statements regarding the Company's expectations with respect to
the Company's future development plans for its next-generation Levacor VAD,
including the timing and scope of clinical trials, as well as, other
statements that can be identified by the use of forward-looking language, such
as "believes," "feels," "expects," "may," "will," "should," "seeks," "plans,"
"anticipates," or "intends" or the negative of those terms, or by discussions
of strategy or intentions. Investors are cautioned that all forward-looking
statements involve risk and uncertainties, including without limitation:
delays in development, preclinical qualification and regulatory approvals of
the Levacor VAD; costs and delays associated with clinical trials; slower
Destination Therapy adoption rate for VADs; need for additional financing; and
other risks detailed in the Company's filings with the United States
Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-KSB
for the year ended December 31, 2006, as amended.
For further information:
For further information: Mr. Richard Juelis, +1-510-563-4713, or Ms.
Peggy Allman, +1-510-563-4721, both of World Heart Corporation; or Mr.
Stephen Laird of Genesis Select Corporation, +1-203-341-0214, for World Heart
Corporation Web Site: http://www.worldheart.com