The medical devices industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by increased need for homecare, preventative treatments, early diagnosis, reducing patient recovery times and improving outcomes, as well as a growing importance in technologies such as machine learning, augmented reality, 5G and digitalization. In the last three years alone, there have been over 450,000 patents filed and granted in the medical devices industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Environment sustainability in Medical Devices: Bio-Compatible Surgical Adjuncts.
However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilising and reaching maturity.
Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.
150+ innovations will shape the medical devices industry
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the medical devices industry using innovation intensity models built on over 550,000 patents, there are 150+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Within the emerging innovation stage, robotic 3D bio-printing and 3D printed prosthesis are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Sharps disposal containers, biomedical 3D printing, and tooth 3D printing are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are bio-compatible surgical adjuncts and bio-active prosthesis sealing, which are now well established in the industry.
Innovation S-curve for environmental sustainability in the medical devices industry
Bio-compatible surgical adjuncts is a key innovation area in environmental sustainability
Bio-compatible materials are employed in medical devices that are placed either within or in contact with the human body, such as stents and ventilators. Bio-compatible surgical adjuncts are set up to respond to physiological triggers while still holding at least one drug in a controllably releasable state. Bio-compatible surgical adjuncts have replaced conventional adjuncts that could be toxic and interfere with the normal metabolic functioning of the body.
GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established medical devices companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of bio-compatible surgical adjuncts.
Key players in bio-compatible surgical adjuncts – a disruptive innovation in the medical devices industry
‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.
‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.
Patent volumes related to bio-compatible surgical adjuncts
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Johnson & Johnson is one of the leading patent filers in the field of bio-compatible surgical adjuncts. Some other key patent filers in the field include Medtronic and Terumo.
In terms of application diversity, 3M leads the pack, followed by Confluent Medical Technologies and Cardiatis. By means of geographic reach, Wallaby Medical holds the top position, followed by Smith and Nephew and Cardiatis in the second and third spots, respectively.
Advancements in the design and development of biomaterials will optimize biocompatibility and protect human health and the environment. The development of non-toxic, degradable, environment-friendly bio-compatible surgical adjuncts will reduce the negative impacts of biomaterials on the patients and environment.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the medical devices industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Medical Devices.