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The medical devices industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by increased need for homecare, preventative treatments, early diagnosis, reducing patient recovery times and improving outcomes, as well as a growing importance of technologies such as machine learning, augmented reality, 5G and digitalization. In the last three years alone, there have been over 710,000 patents filed and granted in the medical devices industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in medical: cryogenic tissue treatmentBuy the report here.

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However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilizing and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

30+ innovations will shape the medical devices industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the medical devices industry using innovation intensity models built on over 155,000 patents, there are 30+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, neuromodulation implants, shapeable guide catheters, and biopotential signal monitoring are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Fall detection monitoring, ingestible sensors, and biofeedback wearables are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are CPR assistance devices and bioabsorbable coated implants, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the medical devices industry

Cryogenic tissue treatment is a key innovation area in the medical devices industry

Cryogenic tissue treatment, or cryosurgery, is a minimally invasive treatment that utilises extremely low temperatures to destroy diseased tissues such as infected cells and cancer cells. It involves liquid nitrogen flowing into needle-like applicators called cryoprobes. Cryoprobes are directed to treatment sites using magnetic resonance or computed tomography to freeze and destroy damaged tissues. Cryogenic tissue treatment has replaced surgical excision method for removing cancer cells as it is less invasive and thus has fewer chances of post-operative ailments. Most patients recover quickly and with little discomfort after the surgery.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 90 companies, spanning technology vendors, established medical devices companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of cryogenic tissue treatment.

Key players in cryogenic tissue treatment – a disruptive innovation in the medical devices industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to cryogenic tissue treatment

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Boston Scientific Corp 174 Unlock Company Profile
Medtronic Plc 161 Unlock Company Profile
AbbVie Inc 135 Unlock Company Profile
Massachusetts General Hospital 112 Unlock Company Profile
Aerin Medical Inc 88 Unlock Company Profile
Recens Medical Co Ltd 51 Unlock Company Profile
General Hospital Corp 44 Unlock Company Profile
Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 34 Unlock Company Profile
Fractyl Health Inc 32 Unlock Company Profile
Cryosa Inc 32 Unlock Company Profile
CryoTherapeutics Gmbh 30 Unlock Company Profile
GoFundMe, Inc. 26 Unlock Company Profile
Pacira BioSciences Inc 26 Unlock Company Profile
Adagio Medical Inc. 20 Unlock Company Profile
NeuroPace Inc 20 Unlock Company Profile
Relievant MedSystems Inc 20 Unlock Company Profile
Stryker Corp 19 Unlock Company Profile
BASF SE 18 Unlock Company Profile
Abbott Laboratories 15 Unlock Company Profile
Aesthetics BioMedical, Inc. 15 Unlock Company Profile
Koninklijke Philips NV 14 Unlock Company Profile
Hologic Inc 14 Unlock Company Profile
Heartflow Inc 11 Unlock Company Profile
CSA Medical Inc 11 Unlock Company Profile
Nanobacterie 10 Unlock Company Profile
Dominion Aesthetic Technologies Inc 10 Unlock Company Profile
INNERCOOL therapies, Inc. 10 Unlock Company Profile
Toray Industries Inc 10 Unlock Company Profile
Attune Medical 9 Unlock Company Profile
Serene Medical, Inc. 9 Unlock Company Profile
Asahi Kasei Corp 8 Unlock Company Profile
Hironic Co Ltd 8 Unlock Company Profile
Autonomix Medical Inc 8 Unlock Company Profile
CryoVascular Systems, Inc. 8 Unlock Company Profile
Antartic Medical 7 Unlock Company Profile
CoolTech LLC 7 Unlock Company Profile
B2M Medical Inc 6 Unlock Company Profile
Johnson & Johnson 6 Unlock Company Profile
EyeCool Therapeutics Inc 6 Unlock Company Profile
Taewoong Medical Co Ltd 6 Unlock Company Profile
Karo Pharma AB 6 Unlock Company Profile
Siemens AG 6 Unlock Company Profile
NuVue Therapeutics, Inc. 6 Unlock Company Profile
Meacor Inc 5 Unlock Company Profile
ERBE Elektromedizin GmbH 5 Unlock Company Profile
Intuitive Surgical Inc 5 Unlock Company Profile
R2 Technologies Inc 5 Unlock Company Profile
Amphora Medical Inc 5 Unlock Company Profile
Mayo Clinic 5 Unlock Company Profile
The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission 4 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Boston Scientific is the leading patent filer in the field of cryogenic tissue treatment. Some other key patent filers in the field include Medtronic, AbbVie, Massachusetts General Hospital, Aerin Medical, and Recens Medical.

In terms of application diversity, NuVue Therapeutics leads the pack, followed by NeuroPace and Serene Medical. By geographic reach, Fractyl Health holds the top position, followed by NeuroPace and Relievant MedSystems in second and third spots, respectively.

Cryogenic tissue treatment holds several medical applications including the treatment of infectious skin conditions, weight loss, preventing dementia, preventing the spread of cancer cells, and treating cancer cells. It also holds strong potential in several fields of medicine owing to the storage ease of therapeutic cells and tissues.

Low complication rates, affordability, and feasibility are the factors driving this market.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the medical devices industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Medical Devices.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.