As each New Year unfolds, it holds the promise of a blank slate, renewal, the possibility of change. It’s a time when we’re eager to find solutions to problems, dispel doubts and anxieties, vow to do something better or reform behavior and take stock of what’s past and predict what’s forthcoming. It’s the kind of resolve that leads to lines for cardio equipment at the gym when just a few months prior there had been no problem finding a machine. For the medical device industry, evolution is the name of the game, and the beginning of a new year allows us evaluate (with excitement and uncertainty) the promise new opportunities and challenges.
For example, researchers at MIT in Boston announced in December they had developed an implantable device that could help doctors monitor whether chemotherapy drugs are reaching tumors. It also could rapidly verify whether the drugs are working and alert the doctors if the cancer recurs, researchers said. The device is made of a tiny silicone rod that holds nanoparticles designed to become visible on an MRI scan in the presence of cancer markers such as growth hormones and cancer drugs. Though currently in preclinical tests in mice, imagine the possibilities this breakthrough could mean in the fight against cancer. I hope to be able to report in the pages of Medical Product Outsourcing the successful progression of this breakthrough.
While it’s not quite cancer research, MPO continues its work to help the industry do business better. One of our New Year’s resolutions is to evolve along with the sector we cover, providing new resources, tools and information. Beginning with this issue, we kick off MPO’s fourth year with our new Advances in Technology series, starting with a profile of RFID technology adoption in healthcare and in the device space. Throughout the year, the series will cover the latest developments in cutting-edge device categories, including imaging, cardiovascular, women’s health, nanotechnology, respiratory and neurovascular. This series also will be accompanied by educational online webinars. We look forward to bringing you more information about this program.
Also, to bring more expertise to bear in our reporting in 2007 (and beyond), we welcome three new members to our Editorial Advisory Board: Todd McCaslin, senior manager of external manufacturing for Boston Scientific; John O’Brien, president of John O’Brien Consulting; and Dave Thoreson, plant manager for Phillips Plastics Corp. We appreciate their input and guidance as we plan MPO’s content.
This year already is shaping up to be filled with news. From continuing industry consolidation and takeovers (read about the Biomet buyout in Top of the News on pg. 14) to the upcoming renewal negotiations for the FDA’s medical device user fee program, there will be no shortage of noteworthy events. As always we hope to hear your input and feedback. Best wishes for a productive, innovative, prosperous and profitable 2007.