A high-powered laser that can unblock arteries clogged with cholesterol in a matter of minutes has been developed by UK scientists.

The device consists of a catheter called Turbo Elite, which is fixed to a laser called Excimer. It uses ultraviolet light, delivered in short bursts, to vapourise blockages.

Once normal flow is restored, the remaining particles are safely passed out of the body.

Trials of the device at the University College Hospital in London showed that the procedure was a major success, reducing operating times and patient recovery times.