MPMN_Medical Product Manufacturing News

Medical Product Manufacturing News, September/October 2015

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Q M E D . C O M / M P M N M E D I C A L P R O D U C T M A N U F A C T U R I N G N E W S S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 1 5 2 1 Chardack-Greatbatch Implantable Cardiac Pacemaker (Around 1961) In 1960, news came out that William Chardack, MD, and Andrew Gage, MD, at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Buffalo, NY, had joined electrical engineer Wilson Greatbatch to test out totally implantable pacemakers. As Medtronic's corporate history relates, the company's founders were pretty interested. Palmer Hermundslie f ew his own plane to Buffalo to meet Chardack and Greatbatch, and signed a contract giving Medtronic exclusive rights to produce and market the Chardack-Greatbatch implantable pulse generator. Medtronic received orders for 50 of the $375 implantable units within two months of starting production. Microlith P 0505 Pacemaker (1978) Medtronic's founders weren't the only commercial visionaries in Minnesota's medtech industry. A real mecca of commercial innovation and talent blossomed in the state during the 1960s and 1970s—a hub of innovation that exists to this day. Just one of many signif cant players in this story is serial entrepreneur Manny Villafana. He started St. Jude Medical in the 1970s and worked with Lillehei and others to improve, patent, and commercialize heart valves, the Smithsonian recounts. Villanafa also launched Cardiac Pacemakers Inc., which is now part of Boston Scientif c's Guidant business. CPI's achievements included the programmable Microlith P 0505 pacemaker. Medical Alley Poster (1988) By the late 1980s, Minnesota could easily boast of itself as "Medical Alley"—one of the top centers of medical device innovation in the world. Along with California and Massachusetts, it is one of the top three medtech hubs in the United States.

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