SurgiQuest (Orange, Connecticut) reported the first single-port laparoscopic removal of an ovary using the AirSeal access system.

Drs. Anthony Discuillo and Christopher Awtry performed the procedure at Mount Auburn Hospital (Cambridge, Massachusetts). The AirSeal creates an invisible barrier that does not rely on gaskets or seals, thus providing unobstructed access to the cavity without loosing intra-abdominal pressure, enabling surgeons to place a telescope, all operative instruments and large specimen sac through a single 12 mm port.

"The AirSeal Access System represented a significant improvement in operative management of patients with adnexal masses, which traditionally requires three separate ports for completion," said Awtry, instructor of gynecological oncology at Harvard Medical School (Boston). "The 5 cm mass was worrisome for malignancy. After it was removed from the pelvic sidewall, we were able to place it in a sac and remove it without spillage."

SurgiQuest makes technologies for minimally invasive surgery.

Synthetic Blood to lease Richmond office

Synthetic Blood International (Costa Mesa, California) said that it has signed an agreement to lease space for a research office in the Virginia BioTechnology Research Park (Richmond). This space will be used to coordinate research between the company and sponsored researchers at the Virginia Commonwealth University Reanimation Engineering Shock Center (VCURES). A number of preclinical and clinical projects using Oxycyte are presently under way and others are planned at VCURES.

Oxycyte is the company's perfluorocarbon therapeutic oxygen carrier and blood substitute.

"The offices at the Virginia BioTechnology Research Park will further support and enhance the growth of new technologies from the laboratory bench to the patient bedside," said Chris Stern, CEO and chairman. "While strengthening our development activities with researchers at VCURES, this amazing opportunity comes at a very favorable cost/benefit ratio. It will actually help us to preserve money because expenses to coordinate that research will decrease."

The Virginia BioTechnology Research Park is located on a 34-acre campus adjacent to Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center.

Synergetics USA retains Cameron Associates

Synergetics USA (O'Fallon, Missouri) said it has retained Cameron Associates as its investor relations advisor.

"Synergetics has made great strides in improving its overall corporate performance and is on track to continue its growth strategy," said Al Palombo, VP of Cameron. "This is reflected in the company's ongoing success in cost savings initiatives and their drive for consistent top- and bottom-line growth... . Synergetics' management has laid the foundation on which its ongoing value proposition will be built."

Synergetics develops products for the vitreoretinal, neurosurgery, and ear, nose and throat surgery markets.

World Heart gets Nasdaq notice

World Heart (Oakland, California) said it has received a notice from the listing qualifications department of the Nasdaq Stock Market stating that for the last 30 consecutive business days, the bid price of the company's common shares has closed below the minimum $1 per share requirement for continued inclusion under Marketplace Rule 4310(c)(4).

The notice further states that the company will be provided 180 calendar to regain compliance. If, at anytime before Oct. 27, the bid price of the company's common shares closes at $1 per share or more for a minimum of 10 consecutive business days, the company may regain compliance with the rule.

WorldHeart makes mechanical circulatory support systems.