Successful in vivo tests pave way for first-in-human trial in near future
HONG KONG, Sept. 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Agilis Robotics Limited (“Agilis Robotics“or the”Company“), the creator of the first surgical robotic instruments in Hong Kong to target endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) and en bloc resection of bladder tumor (ERBT) procedures, announced its fundraising status, as well as its latest technological achievements.
Agilis Robotics Cycle A fundraising was completed in 2022, with the Pre-B cycle, which involves fundraising for respective applications from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) which should begin. These efforts will help improve the efficiency of marketing the Company’s products in mainland China. Pre-B cycle fundraising activity is expected to conclude by the end of 2022, with a fundraising goal set at $5 million. It should be noted that Agilis Robotics has targeted its market value to meet the basic application requirement stipulated in Chapter 18A regarding the listing of biotechnology companies on the main board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange by 2025.
In the field of robotics, Agilis Robotics has made further progress in the areas of specification, compatibility and AI. Specification-wise, its long, flexible, miniature robotic arms – with five degrees of freedom – have improved tissue traction and instrument triangulation. Since robotic arms also include a variety of end effectors, they can perform a wide range of complex tasks. Additionally, perfect compatibility is achieved as each robotic arm is less than 2.8mm in diameter, so they can pass directly through or alongside conventional endoscopes currently used in clinical practice. In terms of surgeon usability, improvements have been made to the surgeon’s console, which is both compact and mobile, allowing it to be placed close to the patient. Additionally, with floating pen controllers, seamless transition of endoscope controls can be achieved. Recognizing the benefits and importance of AI-based consulting and training, Agilis Robotics has defined performance benchmarks to improve user training and flatten the learning curve. This includes training in topics such as monocular depth estimation and instrument segmentation for conventional endoscopes.
It should be noted that Agilis Robotics successfully completed the in vivo tests, which involved the artificial resection of the bladder tumor in June 2022. The extremely narrow diameter of the robotic arms enabled their compatibility with telescopes and cable sheaths. traditional urology, and the arms were able to squeeze and cut the tumor tissue. More importantly, the entire tumor was successfully removed. The company is now targeting its first-in-human (FIM) trial/test in 2024.
Agilis Robotics has maintained its progress through successive achievements, ranging from concept development to successful patent applications; cadaveric tests for machine prototyping; and more recently, the completion of in vivo testing that will lead to FIM testing. Despite the long development path and the high financial and technological requirements, Agilis Robotics has always achieved its goals.
As the first and only company in Hong Kong to develop robotic instruments targeting the ESD and ERBT segments, Agilis Robotics is well positioned to help the medical community as the demand for such procedures continues to grow. Already, the targeted market manual procedures (gastrointestinal and bladder) in China in 2019 are 6 million per year and the global cases of bladder cancer in 2020 are 573,000. Projected cases suitable for ESD and ERBT robotic procedures number 5.5 million and 690,000 respectively worldwide each year. With the worldwide promotion of early detection of colorectal cancer, the number of ESD procedures is increasing rapidly by 18.6% per year. Possessing the unique small diameter flexible surgical robotic instruments that are compatible with both flexible and rigid endoscopes, the Company is in an advantageous position to meet the unmet clinical demand for interventional endoscopy and, just as importantly, to provide benefits to patients in terms of shorter lifespan. procedural time and lower recurrence rate.
Kwok Ka-Wai, Ph.D. (Imp London), co-founder of Agilis Robotics said, “Under the watchful eye of a professional management team comprised of experts in robotics, clinical trials and finance, with deep understanding and experience of R&D, clinical workflows and management funds, we will be able to address different facets of surgical device development. The same team will also ensure that Agilis Robotics fully capitalizes on booming market segments and maintains its growth trajectory.”
Jason YK Chan, residency at Johns Hopkins Medicine (DABOto), co-founder of Agilis Robotics said: “With the increasing widespread adoption of endoscopic procedures, particularly colorectal screening, there is a growing unmet need to minimally invasively treat and remove identified lesions. In the bladder, there is There is a significant unmet need to perform en bloc resections to reduce bladder cancer recurrence Agilis addresses these needs and improves the surgeon’s ease and comfort in performing these procedures, aiming to improve patient care, reduce the length of hospital stay and the need for more invasive procedures.
About Agilis Robotics Limited
Agilis Robotics is a start-up that develops highly miniaturized and flexible robotic instruments for endoluminal surgery. The robotic system is able to integrate seamlessly into current clinical workflows and significantly reduce the learning curve associated with endoscopic surgery. Ultimately, Agilis Robotics’ goal is to provide clinicians with the next generation of minimally invasive instruments so that more patients can receive effective and efficient care at an early stage.
About the co-founders of Agilis Robotics Limited
Dr. Ka Wai Kwok got the doctorate. degree from the Hamlyn Center for Robotic Surgery, Department of Computing, Imperial College London. He received the Croucher Foundation Fellowship, which supported his research jointly supervised by advisors from the University of Georgia and the Brigham and Women’s Hospital of Harvard Medical School. Dr. Kwok has co-authored over 135 peer-reviewed articles and is the principal investigator of the Interventional Robotic and Imaging Systems (IRIS) group at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) with over 5 licensed inventions. Dr. Kwok received the Early Career Awards 2015/16 offered by the Research Grants Council (RGC) of Hong Kong, the IROS Toshio Fukuda Young Professional Award in 2020, the HKU 2019-2020 Outstanding Young Researcher Award and the HKU Young Innovator Award 2020.
Dr Jason Chan graduated from Guy’s, King’s and St Thomas’ School of Medicine, London, followed by specialist training in otolaryngology, head and neck surgery at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions with advanced training in head and neck, microvascular and robotic reconstruction. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery at the Chinese University of Hong Kong with research interests in the application of robotics in head and neck surgery. neck, having recently led the transoral robotic surgery component of the world’s first application of the da Vinci SP in transoral head and neck surgery.
 GLOBALCAN 2020International Agency for Research on Cancer
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SOURCE Agilis Robotics