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Pioneering disease prediction technology launched

CERA and its commercial partner, Medalytix, have launched a pioneering computer algorithm, iGradingCVD.image-tools (23)

The iGradingCVD analyses changes in the eye to determine an individual’s cardiovascular disease risk, years before symptoms arise.

The technology, to be trialled by the UK’s National Health Service, uses automated retinal imaging analysis to predict a person’s risk of developing diseases such as heart disease and stroke.

CERA Operations Manager Dr Khay-Lin Teoh said that the current method of determining cardiovascular disease risk requires clinical expertise, and is invasive, costly, and time consuming.

“Doctors look at many factors to assess a patient’s risk of having a heart attack or stroke, including age, blood pressure, blood lipid levels, weight and individual and family medical history,” Dr Teoh said.

“Through iGradingCVD, we aim to provide a simple, automated and non-invasive way to predict cardiovascular risk that is as effective as traditional screening methods,” he said.

“Traditional screening methods are costly and time consuming when applied to a large population. If implemented, we predict the technology could lead to huge savings for the healthcare system.”

The iGradingCVD technology is based on extensive CERA research into the relationship between changes in the retina and cardiovascular disease.

CERA Principal Investigator Professor Tien Wong and his team developed the technology using the world’s most extensive epidemiological database. Over the last ten years, the database has recorded the information of more than 25,000 people, creating an important image and diagnostic database.

The iGradingCVD program recently won the National Health Service’s Smart Solutions for Healthcare Competition in the UK.

The National Health Service will assess iGradingCVD in a trial of 104 people.  Retinal scans from each participant will be assessed by iGradingCVD. Information will be collated and analysed to determine the feasibility of rolling out iGradingCVD in optometrist clinics across the United Kingdom.

Medalytix is a UK-based private, technology development company that specialises in the development and marketing of products that automatically detect signs of disease by scanning digital photographs of the eye.