by John R. Fischer
, Senior Reporter | October 16, 2018
Digital pathology startup Deep Lens Inc. has raised more than $3 million for the development and launch of its AI-based cloud platform, Virtual Imaging for Pathology Education and Research (VIPER).
The full stack, flagship product consists of an AI image detection suite, along with feedback tools, cloud storage and APIs for integration with hardware and applications that provide peer-to-peer collaboration and clinical research. The company plans to make the tool set accessible to pathologists worldwide free of charge and combat the decline in medical professionals pursuing pathology as a career.
“The demand for pathologists is increasing with more advanced, personalized treatments and advanced clinical trials, requiring them to be involved to support clinical trial design, assist in biomarker discovery, and confirm diagnosis to enroll into a trial,” Dave Billiter, CEO and co-founder of Deep Lens, told HCB News. “Pathology departments are also focused on quality programs and translational/clinical research projects. With all these activities, the need to integrate data and information to enable a pathologist to support their role in a secure fashion wherever they are located is the focus of the VIPER platform.”
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Using VIPER, pathologists can review cases, confirm diagnoses and complete consultations and rapid reviews from a secure, cloud-based platform. This enables them to enroll a patient in a time-critical trial from any location, based on the pathologist’s expertise and specialization in a cancer type.
Such confirmations are made with all information provided to the pathologist, including whole-slide images, in a synchronized view, with workflow matching the needs of the pathologist, and a library of tumor-specific forms accessible to aid reviews.
In addition, the platform can insert digital biomarkers to help identify best clinical studies and trials for diagnosed patients, enabling them to receive the best treatment prior to beginning traditional alternatives.
Expected to reach $35 billion, the healthcare cloud computing market is becoming a hotbed for many startups, including PathAI, Inspirata and Proscia, all of which are targeting their products at hospitals and clinics.
Deep Lens plans to do just the same but will also target pharmaceutical companies by using its VIPER technology to identify and provide access to potential candidates for clinical trials and providing the companies with direct access and greater recruitment capabilities to pathologists, a current challenge brought on by the fragmentation of the pathology industry.