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ALLIANCE BETWEEN JOHNSON & JOHNSON DIVISION AND OLYMPUS OPTICAL ANNOUNCED FOR ENDOSCOPIC SURGERY

 ALLIANCE BETWEEN JOHNSON & JOHNSON DIVISION AND OLYMPUS OPTICAL
 ANNOUNCED FOR ENDOSCOPIC SURGERY
 NEW YORK, Sept. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- New marketing opportunities as well as joint research and development initiatives for endoscopic surgery instrumentation will be among the benefits of an international alliance between Ethicon Endo-Surgery, a division of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) and Tokyo-based Olympus Optical Co. The alliance was announced at a press conference today by Mr. Robert W. Croce, worldwide president of Ethicon Endo-Surgery, and Mr. Koji Miyata, general manager, Olympus Optical Co.
 The alliance is the first of its kind in the highly competitive marketplace for endoscopic surgical technology.
 Jeffrey L. Ponsky, M.D., professor of surgery at Case Western Reserve University and former president of the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES), spoke a today's conference. He said the Olympus Optical/Ethicon Endo-Surgery alliance is "one of the most significant events in the evolution of endoscopic surgery worldwide: the potential benefit to surgeons from the prospective integration of the companies' respective visualization and manipulation technologies will be immense."
 Dr. Ponsky added: "A research and development alliance between these two leading corporations will certainly help my colleagues in the worldwide surgical community advance the technology of endoscopic surgery, with all of its medical and cost benefits for our patients."
 Endoscopic surgery requires several small incisions, as compared to the much larger incisions required with open, or conventional, surgical approaches. The smaller endoscopic incisions afford quicker recovery, a greatly reduced level of postoperative pain, and often shorter and less costly hospital stays. Hernia repair, gallbladder removal, appendectomies, and hysterectomy are some of the more common surgical procedures increasingly performed with endoscopic surgery around the world.
 Ethicon Endo-Surgery helps surgeons develop new, less invasive surgical procedures and the products that help make them possible. Olympus Optical is one of the world's leading designers and manufacturers of endoscopic video information systems, which afford surgeons detailed internal views of a patient's anatomy.
 "The combined efforts of these two companies -- Ethicon Endo-Surgery and Olympus Optical -- provides an almost unimaginable potential for imaging and the development of technologies for procedures and unique solutions in the future," remarked J. Barry McKernan, M.D., who is in private practice in Atlanta.
 The Ethicon Endo-Surgery/Olympus Optical alliance will include joint technological research and development programs, as well as a sharing of selected sales, marketing, and product distribution opportunities. The two companies will also join forces to facilitate independent surgeon education and research worldwide. Operations and staffs of the two companies will not merge.
 "Our alliance solidifies the international leadership roles of these two innovative companies in the technology-driven endoscopic surgery marketplace," said Mr. Croce. "The core -- technical superiorities of Ethicon Endo-Surgery and Olympus Optical in surgical manipulation and visualization complement each other very well."
 A research-based approach to technical development and strong traditions of customer support are areas where Ethicon Endo-Surgery and Olympus Optical have a great deal in common, Mr. Miyata noted.
 "The alliance will have a synergistic effect on our respective commitment to provide surgeons with the very best technologies, procedure-specific instruments, and educational tools to help advance the progress of this new era of minimally invasive surgery," he said.
 The alliance grew from earlier highly successful joint programs Olympus Optical and Ethicon Endo-Surgery have completed for several hospital and medical centers around the world. The Ethicon Endo-Surgery Institute in Cincinnati, the world's leading site for accredited surgeon education in endoscopic surgery, is completely outfitted with endoscopic video equipment from Olympus Optical.
 Johnson & Johnson is the world's largest and most comprehensive manufacturer of health care products serving the consumer, pharmaceutical, and professional markets. The company has 166 operating companies in 52 countries around the world, selling products in more than 150 countries. Johnson & Johnson had sales in 1991 of $12.4 billion.
 Olympus Optical Co., Ltd., its subsidiaries and affiliates are engaged in the manufacture and sale of optoelectronic equipment and other products. Major lines include cameras, video camcorders, microscopes, endoscopes, and clinical analyzers. At present, Olympus endoscopes account for 80 percent of the entire world market. Consolidated net sales in the 1992 Annual Report were 260,111 million yen (US$1.9 billion).
 -0- 9/9/92
 /CONTACT: Robert Andrews, 908-524-3348, or home: 201-543-6024, or (investors) Clarence E. Lockett, 908-524-6491, or home: 215-493-0757, both of Johnson & Johnson, or Peter Steinerman of Ruder-Finn, 212-715-1677, or home: 516-569-0228, for Johnson & Johnson; or Tsuyoshi Kikukawa of Olympus Optical Co., in Tokyo: 81-3-3340-2174/
 (JNJ) CO: Johnson & Johnson; Olympus Optical Co. ST: New Jersey IN: MTC SU:


TS-OS -- NY013 -- 7411 09/09/92 10:19 EDT
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Date:Sep 9, 1992
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