Home Business News UCL technology fund invests in AI-driven colon cancer detection firm

UCL technology fund invests in AI-driven colon cancer detection firm

by Peter Smyth Tech Journalist
30th Apr 19 12:20 pm

Innovative medtech company Odin Vision is to scale up its pioneering cancer detection technology thanks to an investment round led by the UCL Technology Fund alongside London Co-Investment Fund (LCIF) and AI seed and grant funding from InnovateUK, the NHS and the UK Space Agency and European Space Agency.

The company, led by Peter Mountney and Danail Stoyanov (UCL Computer Science), is developing a revolutionary artificial intelligence (AI) system to improve early detection and diagnosis of bowel cancer.

The new software tool developed by Odin Vision and UCL researchers identifies and characterises polyps by analysing live colonoscopy video, leading to early treatment and saved lives.

Bowel cancer is the second most common cause of cancer related deaths in the UK and detecting it using traditional colonoscopy methods can be challenging for doctors. In the UK alone, there are 1.8m procedures a year which try to identify cancerous and non-cancerous polyps with limited success. With a survival rate of 90% through early diagnosis, new ways of identifying and diagnosing cancerous growths sooner are vital for improved patient outcomes.

Odin Vision’s pioneering technology uses advanced computer vision coupled with artificial intelligence to accurately detect cancerous tissue types during endoscopy procedures.

The technology uses advanced machine learning algorithms specifically designed for medical data. The company is also focused on developing a scalable real time healthcare system that uses cloud computing and satellite communications to support doctors in their decision making.

The investment will enable Odin Vision to improve the accuracy and usability of its software through a proof of concept phase, prior to the company demonstrating greater scalability with clinical trials. The funding will enable it to develop its software into a deployable system that can plug in easily to existing endoscopic imaging systems. Driven by medtech developments, the global colonoscopy market is currently estimated at £8bn, with growth of a further 25% to £10bn expected by 2025.

David Grimm, investment director, UCL technology fund said, “Odin Vision presents an exciting opportunity in a fast-paced area of the medtech landscape. Its innovative software has the potential to save millions of pounds for the NHS, as well as offering medical treatment that clinicians can have greater conviction in.

“I look forward to working with Peter, Danail and the Odin Vision team as their technology is taken through the next phase of development. This is our first investment into a company created through UCLB’s innovative Portico Venture Programme and we look forward to supporting many more.”

Pete Mountney, CEO, Odin Vision said, “The UCL team of computer scientists, engineers and clinicians have developed and refined this amazing technology over a number of year and this investment comes at a crucial time for the company as we prepare to bring this technology into the hospital.

“It is a very exciting time in healthcare where there are significant opportunities to develop technology that can lead to better patient outcomes and save healthcare payers money.”

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