MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Morgantown-based medical technology startup studio, Intermed Labs at Mon Health, has announced its collaboration and funding of RetrieV, a revolutionary new suture passer system with patented needle technology to improve arthroscopic surgery of the shoulder, knee, and hip.

Dr. Tom McClellan, co-founder of Intermed Labs, said the inventor of RetrieV is based out of Salt Lake City, Utah but now that an investment has been made, all the work to bring it to market will be done in Morgantown. McClellan called the idea novel and the inventor talented because he said this new technology can revolutionize the industry. As things stand right now, he said, arthroscopic surgery needles are expensive, not good for more than a couple of uses and have problems with design and functionality.

“You’re asking these needles to bend around corners and very tough tissue that is difficult for a needle to do in such a small space,” McClellan said. “This inventor came up with a very unique way and a very novel way to make it stiffer and stronger than the standard needles. We believe that this needle he is creating could become pretty close to the gold standard in shoulder and knee surgery. We’re excited because that’s passing through Morgantown.”

McClellan (middle) at Intermed Labs with colleagues

RetrieV’s inventor already had multiple prototypes but now that the idea is in Morgantown, the prototype stage continues to work out any issues.

In addition, McClellan said they are providing funding, engineering and building an executive team around the product to ensure it hits the market and makes the change in the industry that he knows it can.

Again, he reiterated his excitement about developing all of this in the state of West Virginia.

A look at a RetrieV prototype

“We’re really excited that this technology gets to transit through Morgantown,” he said. “We’re helping to build value to the company, we’re helping this device get to market and to be able to do that in Morgantown is really special. These kinds of devices in healthcare can be done right here at home. We’ve got the talent, we’ve got the people that want to do it and we’ve got the financial backing from a lot of people to do it.”

McClellan said he anticipates the product won’t hit the market for another year or two.

“We need to improve the design of the device,” he said. “The FDA is the other big factor. To get this device cleared with the FDA will take a number of months.”