Multi-Sensing Intravascular Catheter to Prevent Heart Attack or Stroke

Tech ID: 31774 / UC Case 2019-344-0


UCLA researchers in the Department of Medicine have developed a multi-functional catheter that combines different sensing capabilities to improve the detection of unstable plaques.


Atherosclerosis, or plaque build-up in arteries, is the leading cause of cardiovascular-related diseases. At risk cardiovascular disease patients are often screened via angiography and flow fraction reserve (FFR) to determine if the patient should undergo stenting and/or drug therapies. In cases with unstable (rupture-prone) plaques, however, such diagnosis techniques may present false negative results and lead to potentially lethal complications. There is a need for new diagnostic technologies to reliably diagnose and predict high-risk unstable plaques with high accuracy.


UCLA researchers have developed a multifunctional catheter that combines different sensing capabilities to improve the detection accuracy of unstable plaque. The device, which includes FFR and electrical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) measurements, significantly enhances the diagnostic accuracy for atherosclerosis by providing local, clinically relevant information in a single catheter deployment procedure.Additional sensing modalities (e.g. intravascular ultrasound (IVUS), optical coherence tomography (OCT)) can also be incorporated into the catheter to further strengthen and expand the detection capability of the device.


  • Detection of plaque rupture-prone atherosclerotic lesions 
  • Diagnostic catheter for unstable plaque


  • Combined sensing capabilities provide clinically relevant information for preventing heart attack and stroke 
  • Enhancing FFR to determine stent deployment 
  • Strengthening clinical acumen for deploying stents

Patent Status

Patent Pending


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  • Hsiai, Tzung K.

Other Information


Atherosclerosis diagnostics, unstable plaque, intravascular catheter, flow fraction reserve (FFR), electrical impedance spectroscopy (EIS)

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