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Corindus Creates Niche in Growing Robotics Market

Corindus Vascular tops revenue expectations for the fourth quarter of 2017 and gears up for tele-stenting trial with Mayo Clinic.

The medtech robotics space is taking off with new entrants and new products hitting the market. Even firms that have been in the space for a while are beginning to see the effects in their earnings.

Waltham, MA-based Corindus Vascular Robotics experienced growth and recently revealed it brought in about $4.2 million in revenue for the fourth quarter of 2017, topping Wall Street expectations of $4 million. During the fourth quarter of 2016, Corindus generated $0.5 million. Revenue for 2017 totaled $9.7 million compared to $2.8 million in 2016. 

“Revenue in the quarter was driven primarily by CorPath GRX Systems and capital upgrade sales,” said David Long, senior vice president and CFO of Corindus, according to a Seeking Alpha Transcript.

Corindus develops systems for robotic-assisted percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI).  In 2016, MD+DI said Corindus was one of nine influential robotics companies in the market. 

Earlier this month, FDA gave a nod to an automated movement software add-on for Corindus Vascular's PCI platform. The software allows the operator to quickly navigate to a targeted lesion by automatically rotating the guidewire upon joystick retraction.

During an earnings call, company executives pointed out a partnership with Mayo Clinic to conduct a preclinical study to evaluate whether or not operators can perform robot-assisted PCI’s from a remote location. The trial would test the feasibility of tele-stenting.

“Mayo Clinic received a $3.3 million grant from the Leona and Harry Helmsley Charitable Trust to support the first step of a multi-phase, multi-year development program to explore tele-stenting as a solution to the geographic and workforce barriers that exist to provide needed PCI therapy to rural and underserved populations across the globe,” said Mark Toland, president and CEO of Corindus, according to a Transcript from Seeking Alpha.

Field of automations

There can be no denying the robotic space in healthcare is growing. This market is expected to reach $12.80 billion by 2021 from $4.90 billion in 2016, according to a report from Markets and Markets. The most well-known and recognized firm in the surgical robotics space is Sunnyvale, CA-based Intuitive Surgical. The company is considered to be at the forefront of the market and secured FDA clearance for the da Vinci Surgical System in 2000.

Earlier this year, Intuitive ramped up product development spending to prepare for a new wave of entrants in the surgical robotics market.

Johnson & Johnson and Google’s Verily Lifesciences have thrown a bid in to compete in the space through the Verb Surgical joint venture. Verb executives said the system is a digital surgery platform that incorporates machine learning.

Medtronic has gone on record and said it's developing a platform that will be used, at least initially, in bariatric, thoracic, colorectal, as well as other areas, like general and urology procedures. Medtronic has been discussing its timeline with FDA, but the U.S. won't be the first region to see the robotics platform. The Dublin-based company is planning to launch the system first in India.

TransEnterix, while certainly not a newcomer to surgical robotics,  has had a solution to enter the space. In October of last year, the Morrisville, NC-based company scored FDA clearance for the Senhance System, the first new market entrant into the field of abdominal surgical robotics since the da Vinci gained approval.

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