Elliot Botvinick Receives a 2011 Pilot Grant from ICTS

Grant for “A bloodless laparoscopic cutting tool"

Assistant Professor Elliot L. Botvinick, Ph.D., Department of Biomedical Engineering, received a 2011 Pilot Grant from the Institute for Clinical and Translational Science (ICTS) at UC Irvine for "A bloodless laparoscopic cutting tool."

In urology, laparoscopic partial nephrectomy (surgical removal of a kidney) has become an increasingly effective surgical technique for the removal of benign and malignant lesions while preserving renal function. Because the kidney is a well-vascularized organ, there is significant bleeding involved with an incision.  In order to maintain visualization throughout the cutting of the kidney, urologists have devised a means of preventing blood flow to the main part of the kidney by clamping the main renal vessels. Since clamping the renal vessels may cause a restricted blood supply and subsequent permanent renal damage to the entire organ, there is a need for a surgical tool that can bloodlessly resect highly vascularized tissue without the need for clamping. Such a tool will significantly lower risk to the patient as well as lower the skill threshold required to safely perform resection of any highly vascularized tissue.


Botvinick proposes to combine laser photocoagulation with coherent water jets so that vessel coagulation occurs just prior to ablation (the removal of the lesions), thus precluding bleeding. This project is in collaboration with Sonendo, Inc., a water jet company that has developed a safe, yet ablative coherent, water jet with controllable ablation distance from the tip of the device. 


ICTS is designed to identify, test and implement innovative ways to break down barriers that impede biomedical discovery.