The new development at the Sheba Medical Center is a game-changer in the field of biopsy testing. This innovative technology, developed by Tel Aviv start-up company imagene, has revolutionized the way pathologists examine tumor samples.
Imagene was founded in 2020 by three young developers – Dean Bitan, Yonatan Salah and Shahar Porat. The company has created an artificial intelligence (AI) technology that can quickly identify countless characterizations of cancerous tumors. This technology allows for a sort of “identity card” of the cancerous tumor to be obtained within minutes, saving valuable time for both patients and medical professionals.
In the first phase, the Sheba Medical Center began using this technology to analyze cancerous tumors, after being one of the pioneers in digital scans of fragile glass biopsies that were previously transferred between laboratories. With digital scanning, doctors can view samples from anywhere in the world and provide quick answers to patients even when they are not physically present in the laboratory.
The AI computers at the pathology laboratory now work overtime, analyzing thousands of different algorithms to identify tumor characteristics and mutations within a few minutes. This allows for faster treatment decisions and ultimately saves lives for patients who would have had to wait longer for results from traditional biopsy tests.
Professor Iris Brashak, director of the pathology laboratory at Sheba and chairman of the Israeli Pathology Association, spoke about how this technology has transformed her department’s operations. “Within a few minutes we get an indication of the type of cancer so that our medical team knows what treatment and what exact dose to give our patients,” she said. “The ability to provide immediate answers has made all the difference in our ability to save lives.”