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Instituto de investigación alemán ofrece un instrumento quirúrgico para elastografía en tiempo real


Oferta Tecnológica
Un equipo de investigación de una universidad alemana ha desarrollado un nuevo instrumento quirúrgico fácil de implementar en endoscopios actuales. Este instrumento ofrece un método de diagnóstico adicional para medir la elasticidad de tejidos y detectar tejidos cancerosos, por ejemplo. El instrumento manual utiliza la presión de un chorro de agua para inducir una deformación de la superficie externa de cualquier tejido. El cambio producido en la corriente iónica entre los dos electrodos de la boquilla de agua que se graba simultáneamente representa los parámetros característicos de la elasticidad del tejido. La universidad busca un socio del sector médico con el fin de establecer un acuerdo de licencia o cooperación en materia de investigación.


German research institute offers surgical device for real-time elastography
A German research group of a university has developed a novel surgical device which can be implemented easily into existing endoscopes. It offers an additional diagnostic method for measuring tissue elasticity and thereby detecting for example cancerous tissues. An industrial licensing partner in the medical technical sector is sought, but also a research cooperation can be an option.
A German research group of one of the oldest and internationally renowned Universitites, is very active in the field of scientific basic research. Linked to a university hospital,
there are many activities - many of them with patents - in the medical sector. The group has newly developed a diagnostic device extending the possible applications of existing endoscopes.
Mechanical elasticity is a central parameter of living cells and tissues. Cancerous and healthy tissues, for example, have a different elasticity. Therefore, tools are under development to make tissue elasticity a new diagnostic marker in medicine. Nevertheless, these efforts have been hampered by poor spatial resolution (i.e. ultrasound elastography) or by their usability being restricted to an in vitro environment (i.e. scanning ion conductance microscopy, SICM). Here the newly developed instrument comes into action: it transfers the principles of SICM into the macro environment of endoscopy or laparoscopy and thus opens the door for a real-time measurement of tissue elasticity, e. g., during minimally invasive surgery. The handheld device uses the pressure of a water jet for inducing a deformation of the outer surface of any given tissue. The resulting change in a simultaneously recorded ion current between two electrodes on the "water nozzle" renders characteristic parameters for the elasticity of the tissue.
The instrument can be integrated in an endoscope, which the surgeon can manually move across the tissue surface, thereby measuring different parts of an organ. The whole system can easily be sterilized.
Thus, an in vivo direct differentiation of tissues becomes possible during a minimally invasive surgery, such as endoscopy or laparoscopy. During colonoscopy - endoscopic examination of the large bowel - for example, a surgeon will be provided with another clue for the decision whether a tissue is cancerous or not. Also the application of pharmacological substances or dyes for tissue staining is enabled through the water jet.
In the framework of a license agreement also a research cooperation can be an option.
Advantages and Innovations:
Up to now scanning ion conductance microscopy has only been suitable for in vitro measurements of cells and tissues in the lab. With the novel device an in vivo direct determination of tissue elasticity is enabled and opens the door to newly diagnostic possibilities in minimally invasive surgeries.
Furthermore, an extension to far more haptic information within a minimally invasive surgery is enabled with this device. The tactile feedback could provide detailed information to the surgeon in order to better localize nerves and vessels, which have to be treated with special care.
Since minimally invasive surgery is on the rise, with a global forecast of 33.7 billion US-Dollars in 2016 for endoscopy (endoscopy is one of the most common minimally invasive surgeries allowing medical imaging). The developed device adds new diagnostic possibilities to this growing market.
Stage of Development:
Prototype available for demonstration
Patent(s) applied for but not yet granted

Partner sought

Type and Role of Partner Sought:
Type of Partner: Industrial partner
Activity of Partner: Manufacturer of endoscopes for minimally invasive surgeries and/or Manufacturer of systems for robotic surgery
Role of Partner: Implementation in an endoscopic system and/or in systems for robotic surgery; Research cooperation within a licence option agreement


Type and Size of Client:
Already Engaged in Trans-National Cooperation:
Languages Spoken:


Technology Keywords:
03003 Ingeniería de aparatos