Friday 6 March 2009
New software developed at The Institute of Cancer Research that drastically improves the accuracy of analysing MRI scans of cancer patients is now available for research centres worldwide.
The ICR has partnered with Biotronics 3D to launch the application which extracts data from images of tumours and transforms it into usable information.
This powerful analytical tool enables scientists to gain a much clearer understanding of an MRI scan, allowing for a more accurate diagnosis of cancers and assessment of whether treatment is working. It is hoped after going through further trials it will be available to use in clinical settings.
Professor Martin Leach, Co-Director of the Cancer Research UK Clinical Magnetic Resonance Research Group at the ICR says the software has been developed in a pioneering research programme in the ICR and has been used in trials in 10 research centres.
“This is a new way of visualising and measuring the blood supply to tumours, which is crucial to tumour growth,” he says.
“Following our successful pilot trials, we are delighted to be working with Biotronics 3D to make these important developments available to clinicians and scientists at other centres working on improving cancer diagnosis and treatment."
Scientists from the ICR, Europe’s leading cancer research centre, are working together with Biotronics 3D to ensure the product is user friendly.
Paul Carnochan, Senior Business Development Manager at the ICR, says the new software is robust, reproducible and reliable, and believes that the partnership could have broader implications.
“London has an abundance of research capabilities and commercial expertise in the field of medical imaging, and we believe that collaborations like ICR and B3D can be the key to raising London’s profile as a major biotech hub of excellence.”
Biotronics 3D CEO Haralambos Hatzakis says:
“Developing innovation carries many risks and in a fast moving market like global diagnostics, no company has enough resources or skills in-house to maintain a position at the forefront of innovation,” Hatzakis said. “It’s important to leverage skills that exist outside the company in the delivery of products with aggressive go-to-market timeframes. In the modern knowledge based economy this is critical.”
The project has attracted significant investment from London-based specialists Longbow Capital LLP. Longbow’s Co-Founder Edward Rudd says:
“Despite the potential gloom of 2008, now is the right time for investors to invest in the future and support projects that further exploit industry-academia collaborations with strong business plans for commercial exploitation.”
The Institute of Cancer Research
The Institute of Cancer Research is Europe’s leading cancer research centre with expert scientists working on cutting edge research. In 2009, the ICR marks its 100 years of world leading research into cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment. The Institute is a charity that relies on voluntary income. It is one of the world’s most cost-effective major cancer research organisations with over 95p in every £ directly supporting research. For more information visit www.icr.ac.uk.