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Google teams with J&J on robotic surgery

[NEW YORK] US health care giant Johnson & Johnson announced plans Friday to collaborate with Google on surgical robotics.

The two companies said in a statement they would work "to create an innovative robotic-assisted surgical platform capable of integrating advanced technologies with the goal of improving health care delivery in the operating room."

The firms said they would seek to improve techniques for robotic-assisted surgery - a minimally invasive procedure that uses technology to give surgeons greater control, access and accuracy.

"The companies seek to develop new robotic tools and capabilities for surgeons and operating room professionals that integrate best-in-class medical device technology with leading-edge robotic systems, imaging and data analytics," the statement said.

Robotics has been used to improve accuracy in operating rooms for around 15 years, including in heart, eye and prostate surgery.

Gary Pruden, who heads the Johnson & Johnson global surgery group, said the collaboration with Google and J&J unit Ethicon "is another important step in our commitment to advancing surgical care, and together, we aim to put the best science, technology and surgical know-how in the hands of medical teams around the world."