Brooklyn Bridge walk with The Lymphatic Education and Research Network

Walking the Brooklyn Bridge

Walking the Brooklyn Bridge

I was invited by the Lymphatic Education and Research Network to write a guest post on the importance of education and research for Lymphedema and the funds that are needed  to support their goals. On September 14th there will be a sponsored walk across the Brooklyn Bridge which is hoping to raise $60,000.

This is a link to my post…..
http://lymphaticnetwork.org/news-events/lymphedema-a-light-in-the-darkness-by-helen-bonynge

This is a link to more information about the day and how you can help raise much-needed funds…

http://lymphatic.donorpages.com/LYMPHWALK2014/

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https://lymphnodetransplant.wordpress.com/ Thanks

Help to guide the growth of lymphatic channels

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I am always so excited with any new research to help Lymphoedema, even if I find it difficult to understand it is truly wonderful to see!!! This article was sent to me about “artificial” tissue that can be used during a Lymph node transfer to help in the development of Lymphatic Channels. It has been tested by Dr Corrine Becker and maybe available for use in 2015. “We anticipate that BioBridge will initially be used as an adjunct to Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer, an existing surgical procedure used for treating lymphedema. Our expectation is that BioBridge will help improve the outcome of this procedure. We are working closely with Dr. Corinne Becker, who pioneered this surgical procedure.” Quote from Greg King

Interview with Greg King, COO of Fibralign, Winner of 2014 MedTech Innovator

by JUSTIN BARAD on Jul 17, 2014 • 3:31 pm

Fibralign, a startup medical device company, just took home the grand prize in the 2014 MedTech Innovator competition, winning over 267 other startups. Their product, Biobridge, is a possible cure for secondary lymphedema, a debilitating disease with few available treatment options. Secondary lymphedema describes a condition in which the lymph system, which is responsible for removing extracellular fluid, is disrupted, resulting in the accumulation of extracellular fluid. This can lead to swelling in the extremities, which can cause significant discomfort and is cosmetically unappealing. This condition is most commonly associated with breast cancer patients who sometimes must undergo aggressive lymph node dissections in the armpit in order to stage their cancer, but it can happen in any condition in which the lymph system has been disrupted.

BioBridge

BioBridge

The Biobridge is an implant that has been shown to be able to guide the growth of new lymph channels. This technology can be used as an adjunct to existing treatments for the condition to hopefully improve outcomes.

The product itself is a collagen scaffold with very unique properties. “Scaffold” is a term used in tissue engineering that describes a three-dimensional material that encourages cells to attach and grow along its microscopic structure. While collagen scaffolds are not particularly unique, the Biobridge uses a novel fabrication method that gives it a distinctive three-dimensional structure that is very similar to collagen structures found within the body itself.

We had a chance to sit down with Greg King, the COO of Fibralign, to ask him some questions about this very exciting technology.

Justin Barad, Medgadget: Can you discuss the development of your technology? How did it start and when did you start seeing its potential?

Greg King: Our founders had a “penicillin moment” working in a Stanford Lab when they found that previously developed technology for working with liquid crystal materials used in the flat panel display industry could be applied to several biomaterials including collagen in a liquid crystal state to form 3D scaffolds. When they saw the resulting structure in the AFM image shown below they recognized that they had a breakthrough discovery. The image was like the skin scaffold of a newborn, with bundles of highly aligned collagen fibrils. As far as we know, this was never produced before in a lab. They were able to take collagen, a material commonly used for the past 30 years in various cosmetic and surgical applications, and fabricate scaffolds that mimicked different types of human tissue at the micro structural level. They started working with different research groups on a wide range of high-value tissue applications and used this experience to develop the core technology. They determined rather quickly that this was a fundamental technology that offered a large design space for addressing application requirements.

Medgadget: Can you tell us a little bit about when and how your company was founded?

Greg King: The company was founded in 2007 by Michael Paukshto, David McMurtry, Yuri Bobrov, George Martin and Eric Sabelman. They early years were lean, surviving primarily on sweat equity and some modest angel funding. During this time, the team developed its core technology, fabricated initial prototypes and secured an IP position and developed the manufacturing approach for scaling commercially. At the end of 2012, the Company made a business decision to focus on lymphedema as the initial product, expanded the core team and then moved from an incubator to a dedicated lab space with a cleanroom to support this development effort. Fibralign also benefited from grants from the DoD and NSF to support a large animal study and develop production tools for making its initial product. Can you tell us a little bit more exactly how BioBridge is used to treat secondary lymphedema? What results have you had so far in your animal studies?Secondary lymphedema can occur when the body’s lymphatic system is compromised from a trauma. In western countries this most commonly occurs after aggressive cancer treatments, involving surgery and radiation therapy, but it can also occur from infections and other injuries. This can disrupt the flow of lymphatic fluid in the affected limb that leads to swelling, great discomfort and serious infections.BioBridge is a bundle of small collagen fibrils aligned in one direction. It is made from medical-grade collagen and has been designed to support and repair the diseased tissue area, allowing new lymphatic vessels can form in the direction of BioBridge and restore function.In our successfully completed large animal study, we were able to show that new lymphatic vessels formed in diseased areas and about a 60% reduction in accumulated fluid only three months after BioBridge implantation. This compared to the control group that did not get BioBridge and showed no improvement.

Medgadget: What kind of effect will winning Medtech Innovator have on your company?

Greg King: We hope it helps attract attention needed for Fibralign to address this opportunity, providing visibility to investors, stakeholders and the broader community. We need to build awareness of what we’re doing to help treat this horrible and neglected disease, which impacts millions of people and currently has no cure.

Medgadget: Do you have any rough estimate when your product might come to market?

Greg King: We expect to have product in the market in 2015

Medgadget: What sort of clinical applications to you envision for the near future?

Greg King: We anticipate that BioBridge will initially be used as an adjunct to Vascularized Lymph Node Transfer, an existing surgical procedure used for treating lymphedema. Our expectation is that BioBridge will help improve the outcome of this procedure. We are working closely with Dr. Corinne Becker, who pioneered this surgical procedure.

Medgadget: Do you have any advice for our readers, many of whom are aspiring medical innovators and entrepreneurs?

Greg King: Pick something you’re passionate about because it will consume you and require tremendous energy to get anywhere. So make sure you like what you’re doing. Also get out and talk to your expected customers and test your hypothesis and product plans as early and often as you can. It sounds cliché, but this for some reason isn’t done enough in startups and in biotech in particular. Go out and validate your market opportunity before you commit effort and resources!

Greg King

Greg King

http://www.medgadget.com/2014/07/interview-with-greg-king-coo-of-fibralign-winner-of-2014-medtech-innovator.html

Feel free to share with others. It can be distributed via social media, reblogged or added to websites. Please do not change the original content and provide appropriate credit by including the author’s name and a link to this blog.
https://lymphnodetransplant.wordpress.com/ Thanks

Sue… 16 months post LNT

From Sue
“I went to my lymphedema therapist last night to have my leg remeasured. I am not 16 months post lymph node transfer surgery. My leg has continued to decrease in all areas, down about 1-1/2 inches in my thigh and knee, decreases in my foot and ankle. The difference between the size of my two legs was 26% in March and now it’s 19%!! There was a teeny tiny increase in the size of my calf but my therapist credits that to my daily stationary bike riding, so it’s muscle build up, not fluid! My compression hose size has decreased, too! I think the combination of wearing the compression stocking faithfully (and the stocking is the heavy knit material), daily exercise, healthy eating, and the faithful wearing of the night garment have all worked together to give me these amazing results. And maybe the surgery is starting to display results. Maybe those transferred lymph nodes are working. Also, my leg skin is now soft and pliable. I have not had an infection in three or four years. The most visual proof was comparing a tracing of my foot when I began therapy in January — large, flat with no arch — and the tracing made yesterday – a thinner, shapely foot with an arch! I hope this news will inspire anyone who is considering the lymph node transfer surgery – or even to someone who finds all of the work associated with the care of lymphedema is well worth the effort. When I think back to the time that I actually tried to ignore my lymphedema by not wearing compression hose, I realize that this ignorance cost me so much. My leg began to swell to the extent that my family and friends were really worried about the appearance of my leg. Yesterday my therapist told me that unless she actually examined my leg, she would not even know I have lymphedema and a lay person definitely would not be able to tell.

I know that lymphedema is a very expensive condition to manage but the cost of not managing is so very much higher – physically and psychologically. All of the effort involved in the care is well worth it.”…. Sue

Previous posts from Sue’s journey
https://lymphnodetransplant.wordpress.com/2013/04/26/how-is-sue-going-in-the-usa/
https://lymphnodetransplant.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/how-is-sue-at-last-some-news/

For more of Sue’s progress over the past 16 months just type Sue into the search button at the end of posts..

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Thanks Sue for your latest update. Time is showing that the LNT helps the leg to respond much better to treatment and the wearing of compression garments. It is a slow process as the nodes start to grow and it takes a great deal of patience while-one waits for this to happen!! It can be so difficult as there is nothing that you can see to tell you it is working!! This is what I find so hard but the gradually reducing measurements are a very good sign that things are working. My leg is now only 5% bigger than my good leg, which is the smallest it has ever been. I did try a few days of not wearing compression but it did swell just a little by the end of the day… During the night it reduced again but I did not want to do this for to many days, as I did not want the leg to get worse again, but wanted to try it for a while and see the result… When the summer comes maybe there will be days when I can have my legs free!!! To all of you who have had LNT or who are thinking about it, I wish you all the best… Helen

Copyright © 2013-2014 by Helensamia. All rights Reserved.

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11 Ways to Boost your Lymphatic System

Some great ideas to help our Lymphatic system … Thanks for this which I am reblogging..

The Lymphie Life

berries

As a lot of us already know, the lymphatic system is a very important part of our body, so much so that it’s commonly referred to as “our second circulatory system.” The lymphatic system acts as a sort of bath for our cells, cleaning them and carrying the “cellular sewage” away from the tissues and into the blood, where it’s then delivered to either the liver or the kidneys for detoxification.

(“Cellular sewage” is made up of byproducts from bodily processes, over-the-counter and prescription drugs, illicit drugs, cigarette toxins, airborne pollutants, food additives, pesticides, and other toxins.)

When your lymphatic system gets sluggish, you feel sluggish, and that’s no good! There are countless benefits of getting your lymphatic system moving more efficiently: increased energy, less pain, and improved detoxification, to name a few. For us lymphies, a healthy lymphatic system is incredibly important, so today’s post is from an article…

View original post 553 more words

Sharing experiences

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Sharing our experiences with others in similar circumstances helps ourselves and others.. For many years I felt very isolated dealing with Lymphoedema but since starting this blog it has opened many doors. Through social media I have been able to share my story and in return have learnt from others. When I was first diagnosed there was no one to turn to for information or helpful tips. Now via private FB groups we are able to learn from others, support each other and educate. Sharing others blogs has been of great interest. The emails I get from fellow “lymphies” and the sharing of other’s stories on my blog has been truly enlightening. So always remember, never be afraid to share your story, it will help you and in turn help others.

If you would like to share your story or ask a question please leave a comment and I will make contact with you… Also if you would like to update a previously told story I would enjoy the follow-up…. Thanks Helen

Feel free to share with others. It can be distributed via social media, reblogged or added to websites. Please do not change the original content and provide appropriate credit by including the author’s name and a link to this blog.
https://lymphnodetransplant.wordpress.com/ Thanks

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