Coalesce was approached by Cambridge based medical device start-up Endomag to develop their next generation magnetic probe for sentinel node biopsy. The Sentimag technology and first generation probe was developed at University College London and University of Houston before the founders spun-out the company. Their innovation was to use a very sensitive magnetic probe to detect iron oxide nanoparticles as a relatively benign alternative to the radioisotopes of the incumbent technology.
Coalesce became involved after surgeons who used the probe in successful early trials felt it was too large.
Needing to detect a signal one millionth of the Earth's magnetic field in an operating theatre full of electromagnetic radiating equipment is challenging enough even without the effects of rapid changes in temperature induced from the surgeon's hand and the patient's body. At the desired diameter, the challenges were almost insurmountable, and the solution relied on advanced magnetic and thermal simulation, esoteric ceramic materials, and new manufacturing techniques.
Improving standards of care
The Sentimag® instrument and Sienna+® tracer are approved in Europe and are on their way to US approvals.
We're really proud to have contributed to a product that has already transformed the treatment experience of thousands of breast cancer patients.