SOURCE: Freedonia Group, Inc.

November 14, 2006 10:24 ET

U.S. Biocompatible Material Demand to Approach $3.7 Billion in 2010

CLEVELAND, OH -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 14, 2006 -- Demand for biocompatible materials in the U.S. will increase 6.6 percent annually to $3.7 billion in 2010. Based on quality, performance and cost advantages in the broadest range of applications, synthetic polymers will continue to record more than half of revenues and post slightly better than average gains in demand. Ceramics will realize the strongest growth among all biocompatible materials as advances in the properties and processing ease of these compounds broaden their uses in orthopedic implants, fixation devices, and dental repair and restoration products. These and other trends are presented in "Biocompatible Materials," a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

Demand for synthetic biocompatible polymers will increase 6.8 percent annually. Based on quality and safety advantages in catheters, IV administration sets, IV and blood containers, and orthopedic implants, engineered resins will provide the best growth opportunities. By contrast, demand for polyvinyl chloride in biocompatible products will expand at a below average pace due to ongoing concerns about DEHP plasticizer migration.

Spurred by expanding applications in cosmetic surgery and wound management, hyaluronic acid and collagen will generate the fastest gains in demand among natural polymers. Increasing use in pharmaceutical excipients, drug delivery systems, cosmetic implants, tissue engineering and wound dressings will boost demand for natural polymers. Hyaluronic acid and collagen will post the strongest gains as new improved bioengineered formulations broaden applications in cosmetic and orthopedic surgery as well as in wound management.

Many implantable medical and dental devices will continue to be composed partially or completely of biocompatible metals. Precious metals will sustain the largest demand value based on high price and widespread use in dental repair and restoration products. However, reflecting advantages of high strength, low modulus and strong body fluid resistance, titanium and titanium alloys will provide the best growth opportunities. New generations of alumina-zirconia nanocomposites are expected to see the strongest growth in demand among biocompatible ceramics. Due to a high-density structure, these nanocomposites incorporate greater resistance to cracking, an important advantage in dental and orthopedic products.

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