LAGUNA HILLS, Calif., May 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Advanced Prenatal Therapeutics (APT), a privately held company, is developing a medical device that will help alleviate the high blood pressure and other symptoms associated with preeclampsia. APT's targeted apheresis cartridge is expected to be the first medical device specifically designed to treat preeclampsia, a leading cause of maternal and fetal death.
Every year, preeclampsia affects approximately 300,000 pregnant women in the United States. It is characterized by high blood pressure and proteinuria induced by pregnancy. Treatment currently consists of bed rest and other supportive measures such as closely monitoring the patient. To avoid the life-threatening complications of preeclampsia, the baby is often delivered prematurely at the first signs of distress. Unfortunately, premature delivery is also a primary cause of infant death and life-long disabilities.
APT's patent-pending technology uses a process called "targeted apheresis" to remove harmful proteins that are involved in the disease process from the mother's blood while preserving the blood components that are healthy and viable. In preeclampsia, the placenta produces harmful proteins that prevent the action of certain growth factors that regulate blood vessel growth. These harmful proteins are believed to contribute to maternal high blood pressure and other symptoms of preeclampsia. Removal of these harmful proteins using targeted apheresis could alleviate maternal high blood pressure and other symptoms of preeclampsia. It could also help extend the duration of the pregnancy – and perhaps even lead to healthy babies born on time.
Apheresis is a common procedure similar to kidney dialysis in which the patient's blood is passed through a device that separates and removes a particular substance from the blood and returns the cleaned blood back to the patient. "Preeclampsia is a completely unmet medical need," explains Dr. James Smith, President and CEO of APT. "We are extremely proud to be developing what we expect to be a very viable and low-risk therapy for preeclampsia."
About Advanced Prenatal Therapeutics, Inc. (www.advancedprenatal.com) Advanced Prenatal Therapeutics, Inc.'s mission is to develop treatments for preeclampsia that will safely prolong pregnancy. To accomplish this goal, APT is developing a novel therapeutic device for preeclampsia that specifically removes harmful factors from the mother's blood. This press release may contain forward-looking statements. There can be no assurance that development efforts will succeed, or that the novel therapeutic products will receive regulatory clearance, or achieve commercial success.
SOURCE Advanced Prenatal Therapeutics