IDE clinical study of robotic-assisted MIRA Surgical Platform currently underway for laparoscopic colon surgery
Lincoln, Neb., and Pleasanton, Calif. – November 30, 2021 –Virtual Incision Corporation, a medical device company pioneering first-of-its-kind miniaturized robots for laparoscopic surgery, today announced it has raised $46 million in a Series C funding round. The round was led by Endeavour Vision and Baird Capital, with participation from returning investor Bluestem Capital and others. The funds will be used to support regulatory and clinical programs leading to the commercialization of the company’s MIRA (“miniaturized in vivo robotic assistant”) Surgical Platform.
“We are thrilled to have Endeavour Vision and Baird lead this round of financing at this important stage of our company’s growth, along with the continued strong support of our largest shareholder, Bluestem,” said John Murphy, Virtual Incision’s president and CEO. “Virtual Incision’s goal is to transform surgery by providing a practical and hassle-free platform that will enable efficient, effective, and affordable access to robotic-assisted technology, regardless of the site of care. We are excited that this funding will support our efforts to advance MIRA, so that more patients can ultimately experience the benefits of minimally invasive surgery.”
The company recently announced the world’s first surgery using the MIRA Surgical Platform performed by Michael A. Jobst, M.D., at Bryan Medical Center in Lincoln, Neb. The robotically assisted right hemicolectomy procedure was performed as part of a clinical study of MIRA under an Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The study, which the company believes is progressing well, is currently being conducted at a limited number of U.S. hospitals in support of the system’s regulatory pathway to approval.
“The ability of MIRA to successfully perform colon resection—a challenging procedure in minimally invasive surgery that requires multi-quadrant anatomical access and significant robotic strength—demonstrates the huge potential of the platform,” said Shane Farritor, Ph.D., Virtual Incision’s co-founder and chief technology officer. “This funding milestone represents a step forward in our goal to deliver a miniaturized solution for robot-assisted laparoscopic surgery, regardless of the site of care.”
“While the demand for robotically assisted surgery continues to grow because of its clear benefits for patients, there are still challenges that hinder broader adoption, such as high cost, complex set-up, and required space and infrastructure,” said Robert Barmann, Partner, Endeavour Vision. “MIRA is intended to address the limitations associated with current main-frame robotic-assisted surgery systems through its small, mobile design that is streamlined for routine high volume procedures. We look forward to partnering with Virtual Incision to advance this innovative technology.”
“MIRA is a space-saving solution designed to help hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers leverage their existing infrastructure to perform surgery efficiently while offering a low total cost of ownership,” said Amy Len Kobe, Principal with Baird Capital. “Consistent with our venture team’s investment goals, the MIRA platform has the ability to improve care for patients, physicians, providers, and payors. And, best of all, it’s unlike any other surgical robotic platform available today.”
Funding from the round will also be used to support the company’s research and development pipeline. Beyond its initial device design for colon resection, Virtual Incision has begun developing a family of mini-robots optimized for additional operations such as hernia repair, gallbladder removal, hysterectomy, sleeve gastrectomy and others, potentially enabling millions more surgical procedures each year. With its foundational intellectual property—including more than 200 patents and applications—Virtual Incision is poised to lead the next wave of innovation in robotic-assisted surgery with the pioneering MIRA system.
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