ATS Medical, Inc. was a developer and manufacturer of products for the cardiac surgery market based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The publicly traded company was founded in 1992 by Manny Villafana, an entrepreneur in the cardiology/cardiac surgery industry. The company introduced a mechanical heart valve incorporating a pivot mechanism consisting of protruding spheres on which the valve’s leaflets pivot to open and close. This was intended to eliminate the cavity created by the pivot of all other bileaflet valves and to improve blood flow through the valve, minimizing potential for blood clot formation. The ATS Open Pivot Heart Valve was first sold in international markets in 1992 and subsequently granted FDA clearance to sell in the United States in 2000. To date more than 140,000 valves have been implanted worldwide.
The company subsequently developed a more diversified cardiac surgery business offering several categories of products:
In 2010, ATS Medical was acquired by Medtronic.