Talking Tissue Regeneration

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By Mark Leong

Harnessing the body’s own regenerative capabilities is key in dramatically changing the way surgery is conducted globally – and we think Australia is set to play a crucial role in that. 
Australian doctors are increasingly looking for products that work with the body’s natural regenerative capabilities and replace like with like rather than having to rely on artificial replacement parts or bone grafts.
Our Singaporean and Australian-based regenerative Med-Tech company Osteopore is able to make a real difference to patients by providing ‘superior outcomes’.
We were the world’s first company to successfully develop and commercialise 3D-printed bioresorbable implants for surgical use, reducing post-surgery complications compared to permanent implants.
Our implants are used with existing surgical procedures to assist and enhance the natural stages of bone healing.
And we are now on an exciting path, we have commercial traction, and our novel medical technology platform is proven and has numerous applications for bone regrowth and hopefully in the near future for cartilage, tendons and ligaments.

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Australia is an obvious destination for this technology because, in addition to having a deep and vibrant capital market, the feeling is that the Australian medical community is very dynamic and forward-looking with many potentially exciting collaborative opportunities.
We achieved a world first in 2020 in Australia, with an implant used in skull replacement surgery at Brisbane’s Princess Alexandra Hospital involving a motorcycle accident patient.
We were rewarded with working with Brisbane-based Dr Michael Wagels, a world-recognised plastic and reconstructive surgeon who has conducted three world-first operations using Osteopore’s patient-specific implants.
This was ground-breaking in the regenerative medicine space and had very heart-warming and life-changing effects on patients.
Osteopore has been granted TGA listing for three types of craniofacial implants meaning local patients will finally get access to the same revolutionary technology used in more than 60,000 surgeries across Asia, the US and Europe. The two main benefits of Osteopore’s implants are: 

Bioresorbable – in 18-24 months they disintegrate into carbon dioxide and water with no foreign material left in the body, leaving strong and healthy bone, significantly minimising infection rates, and pain and reducing the need for further surgery. 

Regenerative – bone implants successfully enable new bone to form within the scaffold, with only negligible 0.01 per cent complications post-surgery. 

Osteopore has numerous IPs, trade secrets and other intangible assets underpinning its technology platform.
We create our scaffolds with our very own 3D printers and only with this printing technology are we able to create the microstructures that are required for the scaffold – there is no other production process that allows you to create such scaffolding.
We now have a clear strategy and execution plan to continue the necessarily arduous route of accumulating clinical data and then gaining wider regulatory access for our products globally.
We are building a global distributor network and gaining recognition and interest from hospitals and surgeons which leads to revenues.
We are working to ensure we remain at the forefront of our field with constant R&D collaborating with leading industry and academic institutions. Beyond growing organically, we are also looking at inorganic growth opportunistically.
And despite the worldwide restrictions in dealing with a two-year pandemic, Osteopore has continued to make headway and is in a hurry to catch up on lost time and opportunities from the COVID-impacted period.

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We listed on the ASX in 2019 and generated revenue, in 2020 before COVID we generated sales in excess of $1.5million across many countries which proves the commercial viability of our technology.
This is significant as generally many small MedTech companies are pre-revenue and unproven commercially.
The team has been hard at work during the pandemic and now we are seeing momentum coming back and are excited to get back to the pre-COVID upward trend of increasing interest in our technology and products.
Osteopore’s R&D and manufacturing plant are in Singapore, and our current focus has been on the US and Europe markets. We have made recent sales into new markets Spain and Columbia, and also headway into China and India – but our company has been listed in Australia for good reason.
Our revenue got back on track in the last quarter of 2021, we sponsored ground-breaking human clinical trials in Australia, refreshed our board of directors, and on a technology front entered into a collaboration enabling artificial intelligence to very significantly speed up the design and accuracy of implants, and were granted a patent in China creating more opportunities in the region.
In December last year, Osteopore secured the lead role in a clinical-industrial partnership with the National Dental Centre of Singapore and A*STAR research institutes through an AU$19 million project, to develop the next generation jaw implant to access the AU$1.26 billion dental bone graft and membrane market.

About the author: Mark Leong is Osteopore’s new executive chairman. This is an opinion column. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of this publication.

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