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ATS Medical Announces Formation of Cryoablation Surgical Advisory Board

MINNEAPOLIS, Jan. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- ATS Medical, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATSI), manufacturer and marketer of state-of-the-art cardiac surgery products and services, today reported the formation of the ATS Medical Cryoablation Surgical Advisory Board.


This new Cryoablation Surgical Advisory Board reinforces ATS Medical's growing leadership position in surgical ablation. The board is comprised of prominent advocates of the surgical treatment of cardiac arrhythmias, including James L. Cox, MD, ATS Medical Director and creator of the Maze procedure; Niv Ad, MD, Inova Heart and Vascular Institute, Fairfax, VA; Steven F. Bolling, MD, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI; Eva E. Berglin, MD, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Goteborg, Sweden; W. Randolph Chitwood, Jr., MD, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC; Ralph J. Damiano, MD, Washington University, St. Louis, MO; James S. Gammie, MD, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD; A. Marc Gillinov, MD, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH; and Friedrich W. Mohr, MD, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany. The goal of the Cryoablation Surgical Advisory Board is to lend surgeon advocacy and direction to ATS Medical's position and strategy in the surgical ablation market. Additionally, the board is dedicated to ensuring that simplified techniques for performing surgical ablation do not compromise the clinical efficacy of the gold-standard surgical Maze procedure established by Dr. Cox in the mid-1980s.

"Other ablation companies have altered the Maze procedure to meet the limitations of their energy source. Using the ATS CryoMaze(TM) Cryoablation System, which can perform all the lesions of the original Maze-III procedure, ATS intends to preserve the original clinical results of that procedure while simplifying the access and adoptability. This advisory board represents the ablation experts who can provide ATS direction, train other surgeons to repeat the procedure and obtain optimal clinical results," commented Dr. Cox.

About ATS Medical

ATS Medical, Inc. is dedicated to 'Advancing The Standards' of cardiac surgery through the development, manufacturing and marketing of innovative products and services for the treatment of structural heart disease. ATS Medical serves the cardiac surgery community by focusing on two distinct but operationally synergistic market segments: heart valve disease therapy and surgical ablation of cardiac arrhythmias.

ATS was originally founded to develop the ATS Open Pivot(R) Heart Valve as a new mechanical heart valve standard of care. Today the Open Pivot heart valve is the preferred mechanical heart valve in many markets around the world and the fastest growing mechanical prosthesis in the market. Building on this legacy and addressing the largest market segment in heart valve therapy, the ATS 3f(R) brand encompasses an innovative tissue heart valve portfolio to address conventional open surgery requirements as well as the growing demand for less invasive sutureless based procedures. The ATS 3f(R) portfolio includes offerings at various stages including early product development, pivotal clinical trials, and market commercialization. Completing the portfolio in heart valve therapy is the ATS Simulus(R) annuloplasty product line. Simulus products assist the surgeon in repairing a patient's native heart valve as an alternative to replacement. Continuing ATS Medical's focus on serving the cardiac surgery community are the ATS CryoMaze(TM) products for surgical cryoablation of cardiac arrhythmias. ATS CryoMaze(TM) products are used by surgeons to treat patients suffering from cardiac arrhythmias, the largest and fastest growing form of structural heart disease in populations over 60 years of age. The ATS Medical web site is

Safe Harbor

This Press Release contains forward-looking statements that may include statements regarding intent, belief or current expectations of the Company and its management. Actual results could differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements as a result of a number of important factors, including the results of clinical trials, the timing of regulatory approvals, the integration of 3f Therapeutics and the surgical cryoablation business of CryoCath Technologies, Inc., regulatory actions, competition, pricing pressures, supplier actions and management of growth. For a discussion of these and other risks and uncertainties that could affect the Company's activities and results, please refer to the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2007 and its most recent quarterly report on Form 10-Q.

SOURCE ATS Medical, Inc.
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