Optina Diagnostics: Pioneering an Easy Eye Scan to Detect Alzheimer's
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David Lapointe, CEO
Here’s an eye-opening number: eight million-plus people in the U.S. suffer from memory loss, that’s about 1 out of 9 people in the older age group. The onset of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s Disease, Vascular Dementia, and Lewy-body dementia, which are primary reasons for memory degradation are difficult to diagnose at initial stages. The current methods of PET scan and neurobehavioral tests or the lumbar puncture carried out to test for biological markers of Alzheimer’s Disease are invasive, painful, and unsustainable for a patient population reaching such mammoth proportions. Herein, the obvious question arises: what if there were an alternative method for the early detection of dementia that is not invasive and can fast forward the care path process?
The door to finding the right answers opens to Optina Diagnostics that has gone off the beaten path to devising an out-of-the-box solution that helps diagnose brain health. The company has introduced a retinal scan imaging technology that provides insights into the human brain in seconds. This vitally caters to the unmet market need of having an innovative, non-invasive, economically sound, and accessible diagnostic technology that better characterizes patients who are at the brink of losing their cognitive abilities. “We are changing the status quo in the market with our unique Retinal Deep Phenotyping platform that is all set to change mindsets when it comes to brain health,” says David Lapointe, CEO of Optina Diagnostics. Optina Diagnostics’ solution detects the earliest signs of memory loss when B-amyloid is building up silently during the early phases of the disease.
To delve a little more into Optina’s platform, it comprises three key components—HS camera, AI, and a database.
We are changing the status quo in the market with our unique Retinal Deep Phenotyping platform that is all set to change mindsets when it comes to brain health
The diagnostic procedure starts with a quick eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist. With the help of Optina’s special camera, retinal scan images are captured, and the information contained is stored in Optina Diagnostics’ cloud platform and analyzed within minutes.
Data stored in the platform is matched with that of individual patients to find key biomarkers of Alzheimer’s Disease. “We focus on detecting the presence of B-amyloid and atherosclerosis for now, but a broad pipeline of biomarkers are underway to meet the huge unmet medical needs of the field,” says Lapointe.
The passionate team behind this path-breaking solution has years of incessant hard work and eyes on novel technologies to finally come up with this solution. The platform is built upon the hyper-spectral imaging technology originally developed for astrophysics applications to look for birth and death of stars. Optina transposed the data-rich power of this technology to retinal scan imaging, and the recent advancements in detection technology allow to collect close to 100 different images of the eye in less than 1 second to gain information about the brain.
For the days ahead, the company has lined up several projects toward extending their platform to millions of patients. Right now, the Optina Diagnostics team is working to deploy its platform in all eye clinics around the world. Alongside, clinical trials for Optina Diagnostics’ platform are currently on in the U.S., Canada and Australia. Similar plans are chalked out for Japan in early 2020, followed by Europe. All in all, Optina Diagnostics stands tall in the neurology space with an innovative solution that holds the key to treat millions of people suffering from Alzheimer’s, thereby contributing to a healthier world.
Description Optina’s Retinal Deep Phenotyping platform addresses the significant challenges faced by the healthcare system related to an ageing population. The company’s ecosystem comprises a proprietary platform, and a network of eye clinics creates a new and efficient means for simple patient stratification. The ecosystem allows for the collection of data-rich retinal images with thirty times more information than current retinal imaging platforms. Algorithm development utilizes a ground truth that is based on specifically characterized patients from leading institutions around the world. With it’s developing product pipeline, Optina continues to bring clarity and accessibility to early-stage diagnosis, improving the lives of millions
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