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Baxter Receives Grant From German Federal Ministry of Education and Research to Lead Extracorporeal Blood Purification Research

  • Focused on enabling more selective approaches for certain extracorporeal blood purification (EBP) therapies

  • Led by Baxter’s renowned research and development team in Hechingen, Germany

Baxter International Inc. (NYSE:BAX), a global leader in acute care, today announced it received a new research and development (R&D) grant from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). With the grant, Baxter will lead an initiative aiming to create a new technology platform enhancing the ability to target selective removal of pathogenic substances during certain extracorporeal (outside the body) blood purification (EBP) therapies. The grant provides €1.5 million in funding over three years to Baxter and its research partners through the BMBF’s “Biomaterials Platform: Mat2MedTech” program. 

EBP therapies are used in patients with a variety of acute and chronic diseases, including acute kidney injury (AKI), autoimmune diseases, sepsis and liver failure. During certain EBP therapies, the patient’s blood travels through an extracorporeal device, where pathogenic substances are cleared by attaching to an adsorbent biomaterial before the blood is returned to the patient’s body. The hemocompatibility of the biomaterial’s surface is critical to enabling its biological function without harming blood cells or causing coagulation. There is currently a focus on developing and enhancing biomaterials that mimic human tissue properties to selectively target pathogenic substances for removal, while preserving essential blood components such as albumin, immunoglobulins, clotting factors and blood cells.

Baxter and its research partners, including Rapp Polymere GmbH in Tuebingen, Germany, will help advance these efforts by identifying and analyzing potential modifications of biomaterials and hemocompatible coatings. This will potentially support creation of a technology platform enabling more targeted removal of selective molecules, proteins and cellular elements during certain EBP therapies, while preventing sequestration of coagulative factors, platelet depletion and hemolysis. Rapp Polymere GmbH will lend its expertise in biomaterials and coating to the initiative. 

“As a leader in multi-organ support therapies, we are relentless in our efforts to continuously advance research that helps meet the needs of critically ill patients around the world,” said Kadri Jabri, vice president, R&D, Acute Therapies at Baxter. “We are proud that our research and development team in Hechingen will play such a major role in this collaborative effort to introduce new technology for EBP therapies.”  

Baxter has received two previous research grants from the BMBF. These include a 2019 grant through BMBF’s “From Material to Innovation” program to lead a consortium investigating an anticoagulation-free hemodialysis option for end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients and a 2012 grant through BMBF’s “BioMatVital: BioDisposables” project to investigate a new generation of dialysis membranes to improve the treatment of chronic inflammation in ESRD patients.