By: 16 June 2022
Meniscus prosthesis receives €2.5 million EU grant

The European Commission grants €2.5 million to ATRO Medical for the accelerated development of their artificial meniscus.

The Dutch startup works on the first anatomical meniscus prostheses for patients with chronic knee pain. Their ground-breaking innovation continues to attract international attention, paving the way towards full-scale healthcare implementation.

The EIC Accelerator programme is the most important instrument of the European Commission to support promising healthcare innovations. The programme aims to develop and scale up game changing innovations. The EIC Accelerator grant provides access to an investment by the EIC Fund, coordinated by the European Commission and particularly used to bridge the funding gap between market entry and scale up.

The €2.5 million grant will be spent on accelerating pre-clinical testing of the meniscus prostheses, on health economic analyses and international clinical studies. All efforts combined will fast-track the implementation of this Dutch healthcare innovation. ATRO Medical is the first company worldwide to have solutions for both the inner and outer meniscus close to the clinical stage.

Thousands of patients suffering from chronic knee pain are waiting for these solutions. Their meniscus has been removed as a result of an earlier trauma and they have developed the so-called post-meniscectomy pain syndrome. Orthopaedic surgeon and Chief Medical Officer Tony van Tienen explains, “I see many patients with chronic knee pain in my clinical practice. Most of them are too young for a total knee replacement. However, they should be able to go to work, go shopping or simply walk their dog without constantly being bothered by an aching knee. Our artificial meniscus aims to relieve that pain. Pain free mobility, that is what we strive for.”

ATRO Medical has already received several international recognitions for their thought-leading work like FDA breakthrough device designation, Eurostars funding and the Johnson & Johnson Quickfire award. In the next few years, the company will leverage these endorsements and funds to significantly expand their clinical evidence and achieve market registration. Together with partners like the Dutch Arthritis Foundation, the Orthopaedic Research Laboratory and international clinics such as the Sint Maartenskliniek, Mayo Clinic and Sporthopaedicum Berlin they are confident to succeed.