Toray Creates Innovative Fiber Adsorbent for Purifying Blood

Toray Industries, Inc. has created an innovative fiber adsorbent for purifying blood that selectively eliminates bio-targets, such as cells and proteins, by controlling the surface morphology and chemical structure of sea-island composite fiber through the application of synthetic fiber spinning technology.

This new fiber adsorbent is expected to improve performance and safety compared with conventional fiber adsorbents. Toray will pursue research with the goal of beginning clinical trials in fiscal 2019.

The fiber adsorbent developed by Toray can selectively eliminate only the cells that induces inflammation (activated leukocytes), as well as proteins (cytokines) without eliminating the cells and proteins essential for maintaining health. The types of cells and proteins that are eliminated can be independently controlled by changing the surface morphology of the fiber or by chemical modification. Using its innovative spinning technology, NanoDesign, Toray successfully controlled, on a nanoscale, the arrangement of highly reactive polymers susceptible to structural change and chemical modification with stable polymers that maintain fiber strength.

Toray has developed Toraymyxin, the world’s first blood purification device for the elimination of endotoxins, which was covered by health insurance for cases of septic shock in 1994. The device has mainly been sold to emergency centers and intensive care units. Toraymyxin uses an adsorbent that removes the bacterial toxin called endotoxin. However, in response to numerous requests from clinicians asking for the removal not only of endotoxins, but also of more pathogenic substances with a single column, Toray created this adsorbent, the world’s first, the fruition of more than 20 years of research.

Circulating the blood through the column consist of the adsorbent, the highly selective adsorption performance effect produced shows promise in removing only those pathogenic substances that cause a severe inflammatory reaction associated with sepsis, acute lung injury, and cancer treatment, and not reacting with essential proteins. Toray will test the new technology with animals in collaboration with universities inside and outside Japan, and will consider commercialization to provide new treatments for numerous patients.