Ethicon, a medical-device subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson (J&J), has entered an agreement to acquire US-based NeuWave Medical for an undisclosed amount.

NeuWave produces and markets minimally invasive soft-tissue microwave ablation systems, which are currently used by physicians in cancer centres across the country.

The acquisition is part of a J&J strategy to invest in areas of unmet medical needs, such as surgical oncology.

NeuWave’s ablation technology was originally developed by scientists from the University of Wisconsin to reduce invasiveness and increase energy delivery to tissue.

"We continue to work to push the boundaries of access and treatment for patients for whom traditional surgery may not be an option today."

The company’s Certus 140 ablation system features a high-power computer and touchscreen interface, which allows activation of single or simultaneous multiple-probe procedures for patients with soft tissue lesions.

The system helps physicians treat ablations for lesions of various shapes and sizes.

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NeuWave’s probe family also features conventional probes and the Precision PR probe to limit ablation length, resulting in precise and controlled ablations.

Ethicon Group company chairman Michael del Prado said: "We continue to work to push the boundaries of access and treatment for patients for whom traditional surgery may not be an option today.

"The market-leading technology and expertise that NeuWave Medical has developed is minimally invasive and can be combined with other therapies to improve outcomes for patients.

"Additionally, for healthcare systems, this offering can potentially translate to a lower overall financial burden as well."

The deal is expected to be completed in late 2016, subject to clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act and other closing conditions.