Cleveland Clinic selects medical device invented by Irish GP

15 Dec 2014

A vascular surgical device developed by an Irish GP that makes it easier for doctors to access the body during vascular surgery has won the Clinical Innovation Award 2014.

As a result Dr Cliona Murphy, a general practitioner and participant in the BioInnovate programme at NUI Galway, will work with Cleveland Clinic to develop improved outcomes from vascular surgery.

Murphy and her collaborators have identified an inexpensive and simple solution to the problems associated with access during certain vascular surgical procedures. 

This device can be used with a number of different procedures that are used to restore proper heart function such as aortic repair and aortic valve replacement.

Approximately 150,000 such procedures take place per year worldwide and this solution has the potential to reduce associated complication rates.

The device is designed to facilitate the use of a less invasive approach of needle puncture instead of incision, and to improve access for surgeons during the procedure, which can lead to better outcomes.

“A simple, low cost device with the potential to improve patient outcomes from complex vascular procedures would be an exciting development in the field,” Gary Fingerhut, Executive Director, at Cleveland Clinic Innovations, explained.

“Cleveland Clinic has consistently ranked top in the US for cardiology and heart surgery, providing excellent opportunities for Cliona to engage with world leading clinicians to validate the commercial potential of this innovation. We look forward to working with Cliona and her collaborators”

Recognising brilliant ideas

The Clinical Innovation Award, now in its fourth year and held by Enterprise Ireland in association with Cleveland Clinic, recognises commercial potential in Ireland’s clinical community, encouraging clinicians to engage in the development of new healthcare products and services that will improve patient care and benefit both the health care system and Ireland’s medical technologies companies.

Murphy will receive a grant of €15,000 and the opportunity to work with Cleveland Clinic and Enterprise Ireland to further develop the commercial potential of this innovative technology.

“Life sciences is a key part of our Action Plan for Jobs, and since taking office we have put in place a range of measures to support more Irish companies in this area,” the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton said.

“Dr Murphy’s vascular surgical device is another great example of the brilliant ideas and businesses that are emerging every year from collaborative research with our Higher Education Institutions. I am delighted to congratulate her on this award, and look forward to working with her in the future.”

Medical devices image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years