Study: Plant-Based Synthetic Organs Prove Effective for Fluorescence-Guided Surgical Training

YASHIO, Japan, Aug. 3, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — A new study on the effectiveness of plant-based organs for use in surgical training was performed by Dr. Naoki Nishio at the Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine. The study was published in the Laryngoscope Investigative Otolaryngology Journal. In it, Dr. Nishio found that KOTOBUKI Medical’s Versatile Training Tissue (VTT) provided a cost-effective and accurate practice model for near-infrared (NIR) fluorescence-guided tumor removal. 

Near-infrared (NIR) fluorescence-guided surgery utilizes a fluorescent dye called ICG to mark tumors and lesions. This ensures a more thorough removal of cancerous tissue. 

Dr. Nishio conducted his study at Nagoya University’s Medical xR Center. There, he and his team performed tumor enucleation and resection surgeries on VTT, a synthetic plant-based tissue created by KOTOBUKI Medical. They used NIR fluorescence-guided surgical techniques with electrocautery scalpels and ICG dye.

In his study, Dr. Nishio wrote that VTT was an ideal simulator for NIR fluorescence-guided surgical training, as VTT models contain no plastics or chemicals that could create smoke when used with electrocautery scalpels. The plant-based tissue also showed the fluorescent ICG dye, as well as other models or test subjects, would. 

"VTT models with ICG-containing tumors could be a very useful tool for teaching surgeons how to remove the tumor by using electrocautery as ‘off-the-job’ training," Dr. Nishio said. 

This study highlights KOTOBUKI Medical’s plant-based VTT models as efficient surgical simulators that create no waste and are easy to obtain. It also quantifies the effectiveness of NIR fluorescence-guided surgery as a promising method for tumor removal. 

About KOTOBUKI Medical

KOTOBUKI Medical is a medical manufacturing company poised to introduce high-fidelity surgical simulation technology to the world. Founded in 2018, KOTOBUKI Medical aims to introduce eco-friendly and cost-effective alternatives to using animal and even human cadavers for surgical training.

KOTOBUKI Medical uses patented plant-based synthetic tissue to simulate different parts of the human body. The company’s Laparo Training Binder won the Good Design Award in 2018. KOTOBUKI Medical has collaborated with Jichi Medical University and the National Cancer Center Hospital East. Learn more about us at, or follow us on Twitter and TikTok.

For more information, please email Erin Himeno at or (+81) 048-951-5211.