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USGI Medical Licenses Incisionless Surgery Technology to Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (ISRG)


5/12/2008 7:34:16 AM

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., May 12 /PRNewswire/ -- USGI Medical, Inc. (USGI), the leader in incisionless surgery, announced today that the company has licensed its incisionless surgery technology to Intuitive Surgical for use in medical robotics applications. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"We've been impressed by USGI's technical and clinical development including their intellectual property," said Gary Guthart, president and chief operating officer of Intuitive Surgical Inc. "The combination of USGI's intellectual property with Intuitive's robotic capabilities allows for compelling possibilities for future robotic products."

USGI's incisionless surgery platform, the EndoSurgical Operating System(TM) (EOS), is designed to address a wide range of surgical indications. Surgeons and gastroenterologists currently use the EOS to perform endolumenal (procedures within the GI tract) and translumenal procedures through the body's natural orifices (these are commonly referred to as "NOTES" or Natural Orifice Translumenal Endoscopic Surgery). Eliminating skin incisions may reduce the risk of infection and associated complications and may result in less post-operative pain, faster recovery time and no abdominal scars for patients.

"This agreement with Intuitive Surgical is another step forward in our efforts to establish the EOS as the leading, most complete surgical platform for Incisonless Surgery," said USGI Medical CEO Eugene Chen. "Many of the country's leading physicians have used the EOS to complete a wide range of groundbreaking incisionless procedures. We believe that mechanical and robotic solutions complement each other and together will advance and expand this field to a wider group of procedures and patients."

Surgeons have used USGI's EOS to complete the first transgastric gall bladder and appendix removals in the U.S. and to close the access incision (gastrotomy) in the stomach wall during NOTES procedures. Many surgeons and gastroenterologists use the EOS routinely to perform an incisionless procedure to reduce the size of the gastric pouch and stoma in patients who experience weight regain after gastric bypass surgery.

About USGI Medical

USGI Medical is the leader in Incisionless Surgery. USGI's EndoSurgical Operating System(TM) (EOS) provides surgeons the operating platform and specialized tools they need to perform surgery through a patient's mouth, other natural orifice, or single incision, reducing or eliminating the need for external incisions into the abdomen. Operating through the body's natural orifices offers promise for less pain, shorter hospital stays, reduced risk of wound infection and no external scars -- and is rapidly becoming an option demanded by patients and healthcare providers. It has been estimated that over 4 million procedures currently performed using invasive means can be addressed with an incisionless approach in the future, creating a $5 billion opportunity for USGI.

www.usgimedical.com

USGI Endosurgical Operating System(TM)

USGI's Endosurgical Operating System(TM) (EOS) is designed to provide surgeons and gastroenterologists the tools they need to convert current operations to incisionless procedures. The system:

The EOS includes the TransPort(TM) Multi-lumen Operating Platform, the g-Prox(R) Tissue Grasper and Approximation Device, expandable tissue anchors, and a variety of specialized instruments, all of which have received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 510(k) clearance. To date, the EOS has been used in over 100 incisionless procedures in the U.S.

CONTACT: Investors, Eugene Chen, CEO, USGI Medical, +1-949-369-3890; or
Fern Lazar, +1-212-867-1765, flazar@lazarpartners.com; or Hollister Hovey,
+1-212-867-1765, hhovey@lazarpartners.com, both of Lazar Partners, for USGI
Medical, Inc.

Web site: http://www.usgimedical.com/



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