Updated: Abiomed initiates trial of right-side heart pump

Updated April 1, 2013, at 2:40 p.m. with renewed stock figures.

Abiomed

Abiomed (NSDQ:ABMD) said the 1st patient to receive its right-side heart pump, the Impella RP, as part of a clinical trial aimed at U.S. approval was implanted with the device in Philadelphia.

The Danvers, Mass.-based medical device company said the patient was implanted with the Impella RP after implantation with another type of heart pump called a left ventricular assist device, according to a press release. To be eligible for Abiomed’s 2-year, 30-patient Recover Right trial, patients must either develop right-side heart failure within 48 hours after LVAD implantation, after going into shock within 48 hours of heart surgery or a heart attack, the company said.

"The Impella RP gave this patient a level of hemodynamic support that allowed our heart failure team to treat the patient’s right-sided heart failure quickly in a minimally invasive manner," Dr. Christian Witzke of Philly’s Einstein Medical Center, who implanted the Impella RP device, said in prepared remarks.

Like Abiomed’s flagship Impella heart pump, the Impella RP is threaded into the heart via the femoral artery in the thigh. But unlike previous Impella models, all designed for the heart’s left ventricle, the Impella RP is designed to access the heart’s right ventricle via the vena cava.

The implantation team, led by Dr. Mark Anderson, co-lead investigator of the Recover Right trial, also included Dr. Paru Patel, according to a press release.

The FDA approved the Recover Right trial in November 2012.

Wall Street investors initially reacted to the news with shrugs, sending ABMD shares down less than a tick in early-morning trading today. The stock took a heavier hit in the afternoon, down 2.3% from an open price of $18.62 to trade at $18.24 as of about 2.35 p.m.

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