Singapore start-up Hanalytics sets up AI research centre for neurology in China

Singapore start-up Hanalytics sets up AI research centre for neurology in China

The research centre is jointly established with Beijing Tiantan Hospital, which it says has the "largest neurosurgical training centre in China".

SINGAPORE: Singapore artificial intelligence (AI) start-up Hanalytics on Friday (Dec 22) announced it has jointly established an AI research centre focused on neurology with Beijing Tiantan Hospital, which is affiliated to the Capital Medical University in China. 

In its press release, Hanalytics said both parties will conduct an "exclusive cooperation" in diagnosis, prevention, prognosis, patient rehabilitation and many other applications using AI at the research centre, which it touted as the world's first for neurology. 

According to the hospital's website, its neurosurgery centre is the "largest neurosurgical training centre in China". 

The agreement for the CNCRC-Hanalytics Artificial Intelligence Research Centre for Neurological Disorders was signed by Beijing Tiantan Hospital's vice president Wang Yongjun and Hanalytics CEO Raymond Moh on Friday.

Furthermore, both parties will work together on fulfilling the medical needs on a number of ongoing projects including brain tumours, cranial blood vessels and biopsy, company spokesperson Ong Yi Lin told Channel NewsAsia in an email.

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

To protect the confidentiality of the patients involved, the start-up said data acquisition, identification and diagnosis of the data will be performed within the premise of the hospital.

Hanalytics currently has 30 technical staff, but it intends to expand to 50 "in a few months". It will send 20 of them to China as part of this collaboration, Ms Ong said. It currently has close to 50 employees in total currently.

The start-up was founded early this year, but it received support from the Integrated Health Information Systems, Singapore's health IT provider, in 2015 to further develop its idea of AI's use in healthcare. 

Since then, it has been developing deep learning techniques on biopsy, eye condition and heart diseases, among others. 

Source: CNA/kk