MRI or Magnetic Resonance Imaging is a very important tool for diagnosis of complex ailments, but the MRI scanning process is quite long and inconvenient for the patients. A Korean startup AIRS Medical has developed an innovative technology based on Artificial Intelligence, which drastically reduces the time duration for MRI scanning.
One-fourth time duration reduction for a MRI scan
AIRS Medical specialises in AI in medicine and has recently attracted investment from Spring Camp, a venture capital company affiliated with Naver Corp. The medical-tech company has been established by four students of the
Laboratory for Imaging Science and Technology of Seoul National University. The company has developed an AI-based MRI technology that shortens the MRI scan time to less than one fourth of existing solutions without any deterioration in image quality.
“AIRS Medical is expected to revolutionise global medical AI field based on its expertise and excellent technical skills,”
– HG Nam, vice president of Spring Camp.
At present, the total time taken for a MRI scan is 30 to 45 minutes, where a patient has to lie still in closed space for the process. The current MRI scan is expensive and also there is about 2-3 weeks wait time for patients. The new technology developed by AIRS Medical is expected to resolve the current problems. By reducing the duration of MRI scans to within 10 minutes or so, the waiting time for patients will also be reduced to 3 to 5 days and it will also help hospitals secure profitability.
Lesser time, better diagnosis
The new technology will enable real-time, high-speed image reconstruction by applying Artificial Intelligence to the existing mathematical modelling-based imaging methods. The existing solutions significantly distort the images when the scan speed is increased four to eight times, but the AIRS Medical’s solutions can reconstruct images of the same quality as the original ones without distortion even when the scanning speed is increased eight times.
Products based on AIRS Medical’s technology will be tested at Seoul National University Hospital before being put on full-scale marketing at the International Congress on Magnetic Resonance Imaging to be held in Montreal, Canada, in 2019.
The startup, which was just launched in August 2018, has much bigger vision for future. “We hope to further develop the technology to reduce time for patients to one minute and allow flawless medical check-ups,” said Koh-Jin Gyu, the CEO of AIRS Medical.
The funding from Spring Camp will sure boost the startup’s plans. The reduction in MRI scan time is sure to become a boon for innumerable patients and aid in early diagnosis and prevention of many life-threatening diseases.