AM Porous Layer Implant Design with Bioactive Layer of Glass Coating – APLID BioLOGIC

Lead Participant: Ortheia Ltd


Osteoarthritis (OA), especially of the hip and knee, is one of the leading causes of disability across the world. Every year there are over 3 million surgical replacements of joints -- with over 0.25 million in the UK. This number is growing all the time for two reasons: 1) arthritis is exacerbated by age and body weight and the world population is getting older and more obese, and 2) in countries such as China more of the population are being able to afford this surgery.

This consortium are focussing on the next big enhancement in joint replacement through a new and improved manufacturing process for a coating to accelerate the integration of the implant into the host bone. The consortium is led by JRI an SME that is a leading UK manufacturer with over 30 years' experience in making and selling coated orthopaedic implants. They have already shown with GTS, one of the project partners, through a feasibility study funded by Innovate UK that it is possible to manufacture a new combination of implants that combine 3D printing with bio-active glass. In that study they showed that this combination had improved response from bone over existing coatings. They also confirmed that the new manufacturing process should be run at a cost that is commercially viable. In addition bioactive glasses are known to have natural anti-microbial properties, which will help fight infection.

In this project two other SMEs join the existing partners (Vitritech and Metron) to optimise the manufacturing processes through novel surface engineering techniques. The SMEs will also form a robust supply chain to ensure confidence for future production. This coating process will then be validated through studies by the University of Cambridge, who will also confirm and evaluate the anti-infective properties of the bio-active glass. The outcome of this project will be the development of a manufacturing process that is ready to be scaled up for the global market as well as generating the supporting regulatory documents. This will lead to a first-in-human study, followed shortly by a global launch -- the partners are targeting: European, American and Chinese markets where JRI already has a significant presence and many years' experience of their regulatory processes.

Lead Participant

Project Cost

Grant Offer

Ortheia Ltd, Chapeltown sheffield £132,696 £ 92,888


Glass Technology Services Ltd, Sheffield £347,130 £ 208,278
Jri Orthopaedics Limited, SHEFFIELD £132,410 £ 66,205
Vitritech Limited, Sheffield £109,006 £ 76,304
Metron Advanced Equipment Limited, Ilkeston £61,358 £ 42,951
University of Cambridge, United Kingdom £234,787 £ 234,787


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