EU approves sales of first artificial heart

This artificial heart will soon be available to buy

after a long-awaited European Commission approval

French company Carmat manufactures the device

which gives heart disease patients

an alternative option amid a shortage of donors

Location: Velizy-Villacoublay, France

(SOUNDBITE) (French) CARMAT CEO, STEPHANE PIAT, SAYING:"The idea behind this heart, which was born nearly 30 years ago, was to create a device which would replace heart transplants, a device that works physiologically like a human heart, one that's pulsating, self-regulated and compatible with blood. / Now, it's a new chapter for Carmat because we are going to commercialize the product to create a real company."

Each battery-powered unit costs over $180,000

and is designed to replace a real heart for years