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Novel Biomaterial with Ultra High Content of GAG

Novel Biomaterial with Ultra High Content of GAG
Medical Devices

Key Problem and Market Opportunity

  • In an aging population, intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is not uncommon and may cause significant reduction of quality of life due to loss of mobility
  • Glycosaminoglycan (GAG): a very key component with structural, mechanical and biological functions in IVD and many other tissues.
  • Advances in tissue engineering will allow patients to replace IVD with artificial discs with high GAG content.

Key Advantages of the Technology

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  • High GAG content biomaterial for IVD has not previously been made. This technology from HKU is the very first one with established know-how to make.
  • A key component in future non-fusion spinal surgery market.


  • Very high GAG to collagen ratio: >27
  • Closely mimics native nucleus pulposus (NP) with brush-like and bead-like structures
  • Primary NP cells can grow on this biomaterial very well
  • Cell-embedded biomaterial has highly comparable mechanical property as native IVD

Potential Product and Services

  • Fully biocompatible artificial IVD for disc replacement
  • Injectable biomaterial for treatment of disc degeneration
  • Base scaffold for tissue engineering which requires high GAG content matrix

Development Status and IP Strength

Stage of Development
  • Production protocol has been established
  • In vitro study has completed
  • Filed PCT in 2021
IP Status
  • Patent application submitted
  • Development partner
  • Licensing


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