Date of release: Thursday, January 5, 2012

A2136-Dennis-Douroumis-LectureState-of-the art treatments for patients with heart problems are the theme of a public lecture at the University of Greenwich this month.

The lecture, which is free and open to all, will look at the role of stents in treating coronary artery diseases. A stent is a tiny, artificial tube which is placed in the coronary arteries that supply the heart: by keeping the arteries open, the stent combats the effects of reduced blood flow, such as blood clots.

Stent surgery was in the news over Christmas after the Duke of Edinburgh underwent a procedure of coronary stenting, which was declared a success. The heart surgery took place when doctors discovered that Prince Philip, who was admitted to hospital on 23 December, had a blocked artery.

Stents are most commonly used after angioplasty surgery, which is the technique of widening a narrowed or obstructed blood vessel.

The lecture will be given by Dr Dennis Douroumis, Senior Lecturer at the university's School of Science, on Wednesday, 18 January, and takes place at the university’s Medway Campus. It will explore the safety and effectiveness of new stent technologies, and will discuss both the benefits and the risks for patients of stent implantation.

Dr Douroumis has led a research project, backed by nearly three quarters of a million pounds of funding from the European Union, to develop a new kind of stent. Developed alongside research partners from two universities in France, this stent has a special coating to slowly release drugs into a patient’s blood stream, which can help improve recovery times and also reduce complications following an operation.

The new stent will help tackle heart-related problems such as infections, inflammation and thrombosis, or the clotting of blood.

Dr Douroumis is a leading expert on drug delivery systems and novel pharmaceutical processing techniques. He is also working on a new technology to improve drug delivery by microneedles, which could lead to a painless method of drug injection for adults and children.

The lecture takes place in the Pembroke Building, Medway Campus, at 6.30pm and will be followed by light refreshments. If you would like to attend, please e-mail science-public-lectures@gre.ac.uk and register your name.

For more details on the School of Science's public lecture series, please visit www.gre.ac.uk/schools/science/public-lectures.

The School of Science runs a range of undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes, offering world-class professors, state-of-the-art laboratory facilities and excellent links to industry.

To find out about studying science at the University of Greenwich's Medway Campus, please visit www.gre.ac.uk/about/schools/science, e-mail courseinfo@greenwich.ac.uk or call 020 8331 9000.

Story by Public Relations