Optellum’s new collaboration for AI lung cancer diagnosis

Lung-health AI company Optellum has entered a strategic collaboration with Johnson & Johnson’s Lung Cancer Initiative to increase lung cancer survival rate

Optellum will apply its AI-powered clinical decision support platform through the collaboration to support early intervention and prevention in lung cancer with the goal to increase survival rates.

As the most common type of cancer, lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the world. Approximately 1.8 million people die from lung cancer each year and the five-year survival rate is low due to late diagnosis.

Virtual Nodule Clinic, Optellum’s commercial software, is at the core of the collaboration with the Lung Cancer Initiative at Johnson & Johnson to drive accurate early diagnosis and optimal treatment decisions. By treating patients early the collaboration could potentially see some treated at a pre-cancerous stage and therefore increase survival rates.

"This collaboration is a significant milestone for Optellum," said Václav Potěšil, PhD, founder and CEO of Optellum. 

"It brings us one step closer to Optellum's vision of redefining early lung cancer treatment by helping every clinician, in every hospital to make the right decisions and provide their patients the best chance to fight back," he added.

Redefining lung cancer diagnosis with AI technology

Optellum’s AI software, Virtual Nodule Clinic identifies and tracks at-risk patients and assigns a Lung Cancer Prediction score to lung nodules; small lesions, frequently detected in chest Computed Tomography (CT) scans, that may or may not be cancerous.

After achieving US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance in March 2021, Optellum’s software is being implemented in clinical care by leading hospitals in the United States. Then, it is expected rollouts of the software will begin in select Asia-Pacific and European markets.

All pulmonologists and radiologists in the study underpinning the FDA clearance showed a statistically significant improvement in their diagnostic accuracy and consistency. It also made more optimal clinical management decisions.

Professor Sam Janes, MD, Head of the Respiratory Research Department at UCL Hospitals, Vice-Chair of the UK National Clinical Reference Group for Lung Cancer and member of the Optellum Medical Advisory Board, commented on the collaboration: "I believe the next step in lung cancer diagnosis and treatment is seeing the emerging new technologies coming together. AI is key to enabling integration of imaging, clinical, and molecular data—such as liquid biopsies—to diagnose disease even earlier. This convergence of technologies has tremendous potential to help physicians prevent, intercept, and ultimately cure patients with early-stage lung cancer."

Optellum’s goal to redefine lung cancer diagnosis through early intervention through AI is supported by its portfolio of software. In addition to its lung cancer product portfolio, the company is exploring solutions applying the same technology platform to other deadly diseases of the lungs such as interstitial lung disease and COPD.


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