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FundamentalVR Announces Leading Experts in Machine Learning and Robotic Surgery Join Advisory Board

February 2023 Today surgical robotic specialists Dr. Caitlin C. Houghton, MD, Dr. Philip Woodworth, MD, Dr. James Porter, MD, and Dr. Alan B. Lumsden, MD, alongside mixed-reality and machine learning leader Dr. Jared Staab, DO, have joined FundamentalVR's key opinion leader (KOL) advisory board.
Published February 14, 2023

Dr. Caitlin Houghton
Dr. Philip Woodworth
Dr. James Porter
Dr. Alan B. Lumsden
Dr. Jared Staab

BOSTON, MA – February 14, 2023 FundamentalVR, a global leader in immersive surgical training through ground-breaking HapticVRTM technology, today announces that surgical robotic specialists Dr. Caitlin C. Houghton, MD, Dr. Philip Woodworth, MD, Dr. James Porter, MD, and Dr. Alan B. Lumsden, MD, alongside mixed-reality and machine learning leader Dr. Jared Staab, DO, have joined its key opinion leader (KOL) advisory board. Together, the five experts will help expand the company’s Fundamental Surgery platform, enhancing its robotic and precision simulation capabilities.   

Created to transform traditional surgical training methods through virtual reality (VR) and a kinesthetic haptic system with data, artificial intelligence, and multimodal learning, the Fundamental Surgery platform allows users to hone their precision skills and stay up to date on the latest best practices in a truly immersive and hands-on way that lowers surgical risks and improves patient outcomes. Its patented HapticVRTM technology mimics the physical touch of surgical actions and accurately simulates the sensations of bone textures, muscle, and soft tissue.

The valuable additions to the advisory board will help FundamentalVR expand its bespoke offering in robotic surgery, such as the solution created for CMR Surgical (CMR) in 2022. The partnership saw FundamentalVR work with the global surgical robotics company on developing VR training programs for its Versius® Surgical Robotic System, making it the first soft-tissue surgical robotics system to offer VR training.

Co-chair of the Robotics committee and mentor for the American Foregut Society, Dr. Caitlin C. Houghton, MD, is the Director of Robotic Residency Training at the University of Southern California. Her clinical interests include benign and malignant disorders of the esophagus and stomach, including the diagnosis and treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), hiatal and para-esophageal hernias, and esophageal motility disorders.

Alongside Dr. Houghton, FundamentalVR welcomes Dr. Philip Woodworth, MD, an advanced ex-military surgeon and advocate for VR, fluorescent visualization, and robotic surgery. Dr. Woodworth focuses on the use of cutting-edge technologies and surgical platforms to correct digestive disorders such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and hiatal hernias. Today, he is at the forefront of surgical advancement, bringing his passion and skills to the Institute of Esophageal and Reflux surgery in Lone Tree, Colorado.

The KOL team is also joined by Dr. James Porter, MD, Seattle-based medical director for robotic surgery at Swedish Medical Center ​​and Providence St. Joseph Health. Dr. Porter specializes primarily in prostate, kidney cancer, urinary constructive procedures, and retroperitoneal lymph node dissection for the treatment of testicular cancer. He has completed over 5,000 procedures using the robotic da Vinci System, making him one of the top five practitioners in the nation.

An expert in the field of endovascular surgery and robotics, Dr. Alan B. Lumsden’s, MD, clinical and research focus includes areas such as minimally invasive therapy in venous diseases. Dr. Lumsden joined the Houston Methodist in 2008, where he was part of the team that created the Houston Methodist Institute for Technology, Innovation & Education, one of the world’s most advanced education and clinical research facilities.

Also joining the FundamentalVR KOL team is board-certified anesthesiologist and experienced critical care medicine specialist Dr. Jared Staab, DO. A thought leader and advocate for technological advances in healthcare education, Dr. Staab’s research focuses on machine learning, mixed reality applications in healthcare, and point-of-care ultrasound. His expertise in digital imaging and simulation, and experience in design, testing, and validation of augmented reality (AR) and VR training solutions becomes a valuable resource for the FundamentalVR development teams. 

“We are thrilled to be working with KOLs of the caliber of Drs. Staab, Houghton, Porter, Woodworth and Lumsden, all of whom are recognized leaders in cutting-edge immersive medical education technology. As we continue to invest in our Fundamental Surgery platform, machine learning and robotic surgery are key strategic areas of focus to further enhance the platform’s skills transfer abilities and VR environment. Working with world-leading experts will help ensure we continue to bring industry-leading solutions to the market first.”

Richard Vincent, Co-Founder and CEO of FundamentalVR

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