• Integra LifeSciences (Plainsboro, New Jersey) reported the launch of a second size of the Integra Endoscopic Gastroc Release (EGR) system in the U.S. Integra's EGR system is a disposable device with an articulating blade that allows selective cutting of soft tissues. It is intended for use in the surgical treatment for posterior heel cord, or equinus, contracture. The expansion of the EGR System accommodates a greater variety of endoscopes, giving surgeons more options for their patients' surgical needs, the company said. Equinus contracture is a condition that limits ankle motion, frequently due to contraction or tightness of the calf muscle. Surgical treatment involves recession of selected tissues of the calf muscle (composed of the gastrocnemius and soleus muscle complex). Traditionally performed as an open procedure, the recession of the gastrocnemius aponeurosis can be performed endoscopically through a small incision. This is a minimally invasive, less traumatic procedure that produces a smaller and less apparent scar.

• Life Technologies (Carlsbad, California) said it has launched its Ion Personal Genome Machine (PGM) sequencer, the first product to use semiconductor sequencing technology. The company claiims the Ion PGM sequencer's speed, scalability and affordability are driving strong interest in the system around the world and as a result, delivery priority will be given to customers ordering multiple units. Ion Torrent, a business unit of Life Technologies, has invented a new semiconductor device that enables chemical signals to be directly translated into digital information for the first time. “Point-and-shoot digital cameras opened up photography to everyone because they were fast, cheap and easy – and people saw the results immediately, so they quickly became better photographers,“ said Jonathan Rothberg, founder of Ion Torrent. “That's what Ion is doing for DNA sequencing. The Ion PGM sequencer gives you results in two hours, and it's affordable and easy to use, so researchers can make decisions in a timely way and can get to publication quicker.“

• Medtronic (Minneapolis) reported FDA approval and the market launch of CareLink Pro 3.0 Therapy Management Software, a software program to offer advanced decision support to healthcare professionals managing diabetes. The software analyzes data from a patient's insulin pump, continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) device, and blood glucose meter to identify the most important patient information in one easy-to-use dashboard. In addition, the software offers therapy considerations that clinicians can use as a starting point to discuss therapy changes with their patients to help improve glucose control. The new Therapy Management Dashboard provides a snapshot of the patient's key insulin delivery and glucose information on one page. In addition, it pinpoints the exact times the patient experienced a low (hypoglycemic) or high (hyperglycemic) glucose pattern and prioritizes these patterns so that clinicians know which times of day are the biggest challenges for their patients.