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CRT 2018 – Latest Research in Structural Abnormalities Highlighted

Record Numbers Attend CRT 2018

More than 3,000 people gathered in Washington, D.C, for the 21st annual Cardiovascular Research Technology (CRT) meeting in early March. The conference once again featured a diverse, boutique-style curriculum with live-case presentations, breaking research trial results, and a trio of keynote speakers that attracted large, appreciative audiences.


Former President Barack Obama topped the list of popular keynoters, drawing a crowd that exceeded the capacity of the hotel, and was moved to the DAR Constitution Hall. The lively discussion between the former president and Ron Waksman, MD, CRT course chairman and director of MedStar Heart Cardiovascular Research, was a freewheeling, amusing, thoughtful conversation that drew applause and hoots from the audience.

Keynoter Dolvett Quince of The Biggest Loser fame talked about the importance of consistency in adopting a healthy lifestyle and urged cardiologists to practice what they preach.

Donna Edwards, former U.S. representative from Maryland, discussed the continued disparities that exist in health care, drawing on her own experiences and those of the predominantly African-American county she represented in Congress.


Among the most popular presentations was the first-ever, all-women live case. The case, directed by Annapoorna S. Kini, MD, director of the cardiac catheterization lab at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, was a “milestone that would help change the future participation of female cardiologists in live-case presentations and in the field,” Dr. Waksman noted.


• The meeting highlighted the latest research in the growing use of interventional techniques for treatment of structural abnormalities. Dr. Waksman presented an interim analysis of the Low-Risk TAVR multicenter research trial, which shows positive results for using transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) with commercially available valves in low-surgical-risk patients with symptomatic severe aortic stenosis. Currently, TAVR is reserved for both high and intermediate surgical-risk patients.

• Preliminary results from the ongoing LIBERTY 360 study show the use of endovascular device interventions in patients with symptomatic lower-extremity peripheral artery disease continues to show freedom from major adverse events and improvements in quality of life.

• In a first-in-man study, the sirolimus-coated balloon was safe and feasible.

• Use of radial access in patients with acute coronary syndrome undergoing invasive management is associated with lower risk of death, myocardial infarction or major bleeding at 180 days compared with femoral access.

• Another study indicates using paclitaxel-coated balloons in treating de novo lesions in small coronary vessels is as safe and effective as zotarolimus-eluting stents.


Philippe Genereux, MD, co-director of the Structural Heart Program at Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey, was awarded first place for his presentation, “A Novel Transcatheter MR Treatment Technology.” Dr. Genereux was also awarded second place for the Saranas™ Early Bird Bleed Monitoring System.

Third place went to Ronald J. Shebuski, PhD, president and CEO of Symmatrix Pharmaceuticals, who introduced a localized sirolimus delivery system for vascular grafts.

To learn more about CRT 2018 and to get a look ahead to CRT 2019, visit