•Frederic Moll, who is known as the “Bill Gates of robotics,” ushered in the first wave of surgical robotics in 1995 with his company Intuitive Surgical and its Da Vinci systems.
•He has a new start-up called Auris Health that’s helping doctors diagnose lung cancer as early as possible using second generation robotics.
•Roughly 19% of people who are diagnosed with lung cancer will only survive 5 years, but if you catch it early that number jumps to 56%, according to research from the American Lung Association.
Frederic H. Moll trained to become a surgeon, but never completed his residency at Virgina Mason Hospital in Seattle. Nonetheless, the doctor-by-training and humble “gadget guy,” has changed the face of medicine for good.
Moll, who is known as the “Bill Gates of robotics,” ushered in the first wave of surgical robotics in 1995 with his company Intuitive Surgical and its Da Vinci systems. That business is now publicly traded with a market value around $51 billion.
But Moll has started a new venture, his fourth, called Auris Health in Redwood City, California. There, he is creating a “second generation of robotic capability” for doctors, he says.
For the unfamiliar, Moll and his team built the Da Vinci surgical systems in the early 90s to help surgeons do their work in a minimally invasive way. These large robots translate the movements of a surgeon’s hands into smaller, more precise motions.
“That was complicated when we did it,” Moll says. “And the challenge was two-fold. We were pushing the capability of robotics as they existed at that time. And we were really fighting from a conceptual standpoint to convince people it was a reasonable idea to use robots in surgery.”
Image Credit: CNBC
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