Cardica has reported that the Department of Precision Engineering, in conjunction with the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of Tokyo, will begin development of an Intelligent Surgical Instrument (ISI) cardiac surgery robot, incorporating the company's C-Port Flex-A Anastomosis System (Flex-A System). The system is used to connect blood vessels during surgical procedures.

The company anticipates the cardiac surgery ISI, to be developed by the University of Tokyo, will be easy to handle and minimize medical staff stress during an operation. In addition, the University of Tokyo intends to design the ISI to enhance the benefits of endoscopic surgery by integrating Japan’s advanced technologies in endoscopic technology, precision machinery engineering, optics, material science and information technology.

Bernard Hausen, president and chief executive officer of Cardica, said: “We are pleased that the University of Tokyo selected our automated anastomosis system, with Japan’s precision engineering, advanced robotics and strong information technology, to develop a robot capable of performing cardiothoracic surgery.

“Cardica strongly believes that the future of coronary revascularization will be in closed chest, robot enhanced procedures. The history of totally endoscopic coronary artery bypass (TECAB) development clearly shows that anastomotic technology, such as the C-Port Flex A, must be considered pivotal for the mass realization of this surgical procedure and Cardica is proud to play a role in this anticipated paradigm shift.”

Ichiro Sakuma, professor at the department of precision engineering at the University of Tokyo, said: “We selected Cardica’s Flex-A system based on its potential advantages in minimally invasive cardiac surgery and robot-assisted minimally invasive surgery. I am eager to take cardiac robotic surgery to the next level by coupling this and other leading edge technologies for superior patient results.”