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LapSpace Medical, an Israeli company developing a balloon retractor for laparoscopic surgery, completed an investment round raised about $1 million.
LapSpace, a portfolio company of Trendlines Medical (Misgav), licensed the technology patent from the Johns Hopkins University. Total investment in LapSpace is more than $1 million by private investors, Trendlines and the Chief Scientist of Israel.
LapSpace is developing an inflatable balloon retractor to retract organs such as intestines. Deployed through a trocar and inflated once inside the abdominal cavity, the retractor gently “catches” and retracts the organs to create space and a stable operating field. This inflatable retractor has multiple features, including an attachment to a standard bed clamp, allowing the device to function independently, and the surgeon to maintain full control of the operation.
Once the procedure is complete, the device is deflated and removed through the entry port. Its ability to be held in place for a long period of time without the need for additional surgical personnel allows the surgeon to improve efficiency and decrease the operating cost of the surgery. It also provides a much less traumatic procedure and lessens the chance of complications commonly seen with current methods.
The device was invented by Hien Nguyen, M.D. an assistant professor of surgery and biomedical engineering at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, where he specializes in minimally invasive surgery.
The University licensed the patent to LapSpace Medical, and Trendlines Medical was chosen as the incubator for the development of the company. Dr. Hien Nguyen serves as clinical advisor to the company. Worldwide, over 8 million laparoscopic surgeries are performed annually and increasing continually.
The potential market for the LapSpace retractor is estimated at $500 million per year.
LapSpace Medical was granted FDA clearance in 2013 and will begin to market their product in 2014 in the U.S.
The process for CE clearance in Europe has begun.