New device enable physicians to quickly join blood vessels during heart bypass surgery

Guidant Corporation has announced that the company has begun distribution of Cardica Inc.’s C-Port™ Distal Anastomosis System in Europe. Cardica’s C-Port System, which recently received approval, is designed to enable physicians to quickly and easily join blood vessels during heart bypass surgery. The C-Port System joins the vein graft to the coronary artery without sewing, allowing for rapid and reproducible results in one of the most challenging steps in the bypass surgery procedure.

“We believe that Cardica’s C-Port System could prove to be especially useful during beating heart surgery, a technique that offers significant benefits to patients,” said Maria Degois-Sainz, president, Cardiac Surgery, Guidant Corporation. “We expect that innovative and easy-to-use technologies like Cardica’s will help speed adoption of automated devices and further drive minimally invasive approaches to cardiac surgery and better patient outcomes.”

A growing body of research shows that beating heart surgery is more cost-effective than traditional, arrested-heart surgery, with equal or better patient outcomes. More than 650,000 bypass surgeries are performed annually worldwide and beating heart surgery accounts for 30 percent of these. The number of beating heart cases continues to rise each year.

Stefanos Demertzis, M.D., of Cardiocentro Ticino in Lugano, Switzerland, one of the investigators in the European C-Port clinical trial, said of his experience with the C-Port System: “In my cardiac surgery practice, I found the C-Port device to be an effective new tool to assist me in completing the joining of bypass grafts to even very small coronary arteries virtually with the push of a button. This promising new product is an important step towards truly less invasive coronary bypass procedures for our patients.”

Guidant recently signed an agreement with Cardica giving the company full European, Middle Eastern and Canadian distribution rights for Cardica’s products, including the PAS-Port™ Proximal Anastomosis System for joining the vein graft to the aorta, which Guidant also recently began distributing in Europe. Guidant has made a $14 million equity investment in Cardica.

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