The studies included about 2,000 patients in the U.S. and 400 patients each in trials in China and Japan, according to a company statement. Abbott is pursuing regulatory approvals in all 3 regions, which together represent 50% of the world’s heart stent market.
Absorb has been available in the European Union since 2011 and is already available in 60 countries worldwide.
The Absorb scaffold works like a metal drug-eluting stent, propping open blocked heart vessels and providing anti-clotting drugs, but Abbott’s technology dissolves over time and disappears completely from the vessel.
The studies compared the Absorb scaffold against Abbott’s metallic Xience drug-eluting stents, looking for outcomes 12 months following treatment. The U.S. arm of the trials, dubbed Absorb III, launched in January 2013 and the Japanese arm launched in June. Data from the European study is scheduled for presentation later this year, according to a press release.
Other companies are working on their own versions of bioresorbable vascular stents, including Elixir Medical’s DESolve scaffold, which won European approval in May 2013.
ABT shares were down 0.2% today, trading at $37.54 as of about 2:10 p.m. EST. The stock has lost about 2% since the start of this year.