By Liz White, ERJ staff
Middleton, UK-The French unit of Vita Thermoplastics Compounds has passed its expertise in medical compounds on to the rest of the group's thermoplastic elastomer operations.
VTC France SAS's latest Mediprene TPE grade for drip chambers is to be supplied worldwide for this use. Drip chambers (see pic) are integral parts of devices for intravenous feeding, transfusion or drug delivery. VTC said the new grade was selected for this use for its good transparency and flexibility.
â€œThis is a very exciting opportunity for our group and shows the developments we have made in the last couple of years. The Mediprene range is a very selective collection of materials but serves a great purpose in many markets today,â€ said Bodo Meuter, sales manager for VTC France, in a VTC statement.
British Vita plc bought the French operation, formerly called Polytex, in late 2003. At its small site in La Chabanne, near Toulouse in southern France, the firm specialises in clean-room manufacture of compounds for the medical device market. Its Mediprene range, originally developed in France, is now manufactured throughout the group, VTC's statement added.
VTC France began producing TPE compounds in 1975 and has operated full clean room facilities since 1992, said VTC, adding that its operation complies with clean room class 100 000/ISO 7.2.
The material for the drip chambers was developed for a specific customer, for use in injection moulding. But the grade is available to other potential customers, according to VTC. In this medical use, the material has met the requirements for approval by the US regulatory authority, the Food and Drug Administration. The Mediprene grade â€œresists all current known sterilisation procedures (ethylene oxide, steam and irradiation),â€ added VTC.
VTC's operations in Middleton in the UK, Ã…mÃ¥l in Sweden (VTC Elastoteknik AB) and France have recently been expanded by the addition of an Italian TPE compounder. On 1 April Vita announced that it had bought the TPE business of Euro 27-million turnover Valerio Franceschetti Elastomeri (VFE). VFE makes technical TPE compounds for end markets including leisure, construction, medical, household appliances and footwear.
The picture shows a Mediprene drip chamber and its various attachments set up for use.