Japan-based Asahi Kasei Group’s subsidiary Asahi Kasei Medical and AW Technologies have signed a distribution agreement for the latter’s TrachFlush device in Japan.

Under the agreement, Asahi Kasei Medical will distribute TrachFlush in the East Asian country.

Denmark-based AW Technologies has designed TrachFlush to reduce discomfort for ventilated patients while streamlining the workload for healthcare professionals during tracheal suctioning.

AW Technologies is presently engaged in the medical device registration process for TrachFlush in Japan, aiming for a market launch in fiscal 2024.

The device’s marketing and sales in Japan will be taken up by Asahi Kasei’s unit.

Asahi Kasei Medical president Ken Shinomiya said: “We are delighted to add the TrachFlush to our product lineup in the intensive care field, where we have strength in the area of blood purification.

“By leveraging our experience and know-how in blood purification, we believe that this will deliver diverse value, such as enhancing patients’ QOL and reducing the burden on healthcare workers.”

TrachFlush features a cuff pressure control system to facilitate airway secretion (phlegm) management.

At the press of a button, the device deflates the cuff, using the ventilator’s air pressure during inspiration, and then re-inflates the cuff before the cycle concludes.

It secured the CE Mark in Europe in 2020 and US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance last year.

AW Technologies CEO Adam Hansen said: “This partnership is very important for AW Technologies, and Asahi Kasei Medical will play a very important role in our expansion of TrachFlush globally.

“We believe the TrachFlush will have a great impact in the ICU – not only by preventing ventilator-associated pneumonia, but also by non-invasively preventing the accumulation of secretion in the airways.”

In a separate development, Asahi Kasei Medical said that it has wrapped up the construction of its third assembly plant for Planova virus removal filters in Nobeoka, Miyazaki, Japan.

Planova cellulose hollow-fibre membrane filters are designed to eliminate viruses from biotherapeutic products.