Colonoscopy typically involves insertion of a long, flexible, and steerable colonoscope via the anus to access the large intestine [1]. An integrated camera allows visualization, and a working channel permits the use of externally actuated biopsy forceps or similar devices. One of the difficulties of the procedure, and one which leads to more time spent under anesthesia, is the need to repeatedly insert and remove the biopsy tool through the working channel when tissue samples are taken. This is tedious and taxing for the doctor (taking about 15–20 s and 30–35 hand/arm strokes for each insertion) and poses a risk to the patient who remains under anesthesia for longer than is fundamentally necessary. Bowel puncture is also a potential risk as the biopsy tool emerges from the end of the colonoscope, and automated insertion of the tool would allow more controlled and repeatable...

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