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Bright ideas but little money for Singapore's medical tech startups

Small new players hope their innovation translates overseas

EndoMaster's robotic surgical arm uses joystick-like controllers. (Photo courtesy of EndoMaster)

SINGAPORE The medical technology field may not have deep roots in Singapore, but the country has been fertile ground for innovation, with local startups producing everything from the world's first portable kidney dialysis machine to a robotic surgical arm that can be operated like a video-game controller.

The hurdles to success are high, however. Developing new products can be prohibitively expensive, and inadequate funding threatens to hold the sector back. Still, these smaller players have been steadily attracting more money, mainly from foreign investors, and forging links with overseas companies and medical organizations to help develop and bring their products to market.

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