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Surgeon Touts Benefits of Molybdenum-Rhenium in Spinal Applications

By Carolyn LaWell

Kornelis Poelstra, M.D., Ph.D., believes that new materials will bring the next wave of innovation in spine. His belief spurred him to send FDA a letter asking for a list of acceptable materials to study in animals with the intent of future commercialization. It also spurred a partnership when he crossed paths with Jay Yadav, M.D., an entrepreneurial cardiologist working to introduce molybdenum-rhenium (MoRe) to orthopaedics. 

At the North American Spine Society Annual Meeting, Dr. Polestra presented research on the use of MoRe in spinal applications. The data will be used as MiRus, a startup spine company, launches a platform of technologies using MoRe. 

We spoke with Dr. Poelstra, an orthopaedic and neural spine surgeon and founder of The Spine Center of Excellence at Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola, Florida, asking him to explain the alloy’s benefits. 

What is molybdenum-rhenium alloy?

Dr. Poelstra: Molybdenum-rhenium is an alloy that’s been used for a long time to make stents in cardiology. The beauty of the material is, compared to what’s commonly used in spine—cobalt-chrome, titanium and stainless steel—it has characteristics that are a lot stronger. MoRe uses a lot less metal to achieve the same strength and durability and is two to three times stronger and four times more durable than cobalt-chrome or titanium.

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