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Hanalytics launches first AI center for neurology with Beijing hospital

by John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter | December 29, 2017
Alzheimers/Neurology Artificial Intelligence Rad Oncology
Hanalytics and Beijing Tiantan Hospital
claim to have set up the world's
first AI center for neurology
Singaporean startup firm Hanalytics has launched what it claims to be the world’s first artificial intelligence research center for neurology at Beijing Tiantan Hospital in China.

The two parties sealed their newfound agreement with a ceremonial signing on Friday, December 22, in Beijing, with Hanalytics set to work alongside the hospital in developing AI applications for diagnosis, prevention and prognosis, particularly for brain tumors, vascular diseases, patient rehabilitation and gene protein analysis.

“We hope the skills of hospitals and doctors can gradually become more uniform through the help of AI,” Professor Yongjun Wang, chief physician of the hospital’s neurology department," told The Straits Times. “In time to come, we won’t have the situation where patients get a lousy medical outcome just because they went to a bad hospital, or they can only get a good one if they go to a good hospital. AI can help make up for this.”

Innovations and partnerships in AI utilization are becoming commonplace in many areas of health care. Hitachi, for instance, recently partnered with Partners Connected Health to predict the risks of hospital readmission among heart failure patients with AI. The National Cancer Institute also recently granted $8 million to three U.S. universities in the development of an AI test bed for radiology and pathology imaging analysis.

The collaboration, an exclusive endeavor between Hanalytics and Beijing Tiantan Hospital, includes work on a number of ongoing projects regarding brain tumors, cranial blood vessels and biopsy. Twenty scientists from Hanalytics will also spend one year at the center working with medical specialists.

Developments in medical imaging AI technology for diagnosing brain tumors have already begun, with the center hoping to unveil AI software in the next three to four months that will enable MR scanners to generate reports seconds after patients undergo exams.

Patient confidentiality will be protected with data acquisition, identification and diagnosis taking place within the premises of the hospital.

Hanalytics told Channel NewsAsia that AI will help reduce the risk of errors and enhance confidence in neurological test results.

"The use of AI in medical applications will greatly improve productivity," Hanalytics told Channel NewsAsia. "This is an especially crucial solution for the neurological field, which is globally plagued with a severe lack of well-qualified medical professionals, a high rate of misdiagnosis, low efficiency, and consistency in diagnosis."

Hanalytics did not respond for comment.

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