MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY INNOVATORS: ELASTAGEN The Australian medical technologies sector has a reputation for innovation and quality. The Australian companies in this industry are at the forefront of developing ground-breaking products to improve the health and well-being of global communities. With significant investment in research and development and high-value manufacturing – the industry is situated perfectly to take advantage of Australia’s competitive strengths to export niche products to the global market. Elastagen is a Sydney-based, clinical stage medical company developing technology to repair damaged skin. The company's Elastatherapy® treatment uses the human protein elastin to naturally rejuvenate, repair or regenerate damaged and aged tissues, with applications in aesthetics, scar remodelling, wound repair and surgical adhesives. Skin repair and regeneration Healthy skin is the body's first line of defence against a harsh external environment. Elastin is a human protein that, due to its natural elasticity, plays an important role in the maintenance of healthy skin. Elastin's unique elastic properties also make it a key component of other tissues in the body, such as the lungs and blood vessels. Elastin plays an important role following injury and aging in these tissues by signalling damage and supporting the growth of cells that repair and restore the injured or aged tissue. The application of elastin as a medical biomaterial has to date remained untapped due to technical challenges in producing tropoelastin, the building block of elastin. Elastagen has developed and patented technology to overcome these challenges. Elastagen's technology enables the commercial scale, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) compliant, manufacture of elastin. Elastagen's elastin producing technology not only has applications in cosmetics, it also has potential for broader medical uses, such as medical dermatology. Benefits of collaboration Elastagen has highlighted the key factors which have contributed to its success. Working with universities: Elastagen’s technology has been developed over the past twenty years by Professor Anthony Weiss and his Elastin Laboratory at the University of Sydney. Elastagen acquired exclusive rights from the University of Sydney to a broad patent portfolio covering the production, formulation and application of this unique biomaterial. The company continues to work closely with Professor Weiss and his research group in developing its technology. Collaborating with international partners: Based on its novel, proprietary elastin biomaterial platform, Elastagen is developing strong collaborations with international partners. Collaborations include working with an EU partner in the sales, marketing and distribution of Elastagen's aesthetic products; co-development and funding relationships with a UK partner for its wound repair products; and co-development of a surgical sealant and adhesive product with a US partner. Pictured: Elastin manufactured using Elastagen's patented technology. This case study is based on information from Elastagen and was developed with the assistance of AusBiotech. For further information visit www.elastagen.com.