A new brain-dedicated Positron Emission Tomography (PET) system to identify β-amyloid biomarker for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and other causes of cognitive decline. The aim of this Project is comercialize an innovative brain dedicated PET to facilitate the early detection of Alzheimer’s through β-amyloid plaque. Oncovision is the leader of this Project which has the collaboration of relevant hospitals as the Massachusetts General Hospital and Hospital Clínico San Carlos.
Start date: June 1st, 2016 – End date: August 31st, 2021.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 711323.
Alzheimer’s dementia, Parkinson’s disease, stroke and other neurological disorders such as psychiatric, epilepsy, ataxia, multiple sclerosis, are included among the main public health problems, leading causes of disability and premature death1. The prevalence of these pathologies and mental health challenges are increasing with age, so their burden will rise even more due to global population’s ageing1,2. Thus, there is a very significant and expanding need for their early and accurate diagnosis, especially now that specific treatments are available for some of them3,4. Personalized treatment guidance and assessment of its results are becoming decisive.
Neuroimaging seeks to directly or indirectly assess the structure and functions of the brain, as well as neurotransmitter and pharmaco-dynamics. Brain imaging technologies fall into two broad categories, structural (specially CT and MR) and functional (including Positron Emission Tomography PET). PET generates images and quantifies brain processes by measuring the levels of glucose and other molecules of interest illustrating where neural firing is taking place and thus, if there is any abnormal activity5. Compared to the other preeminent method of functional neuroimaging, fMRI, PET offers advantages such as being quantifiable, less affected by movement, and suitable for longitudinal studies. Whole-body PET scans have limited resolution and sensitivity for precision brain region / nuclei assessment. They are also a major investment and are often saturated by the demand of other specialties -specially Oncology- making their (neurological) availability limited6.
 Including impact of COVID19
Brain Dedicated PET
There is an urgent need to cover the expanding clinical demand for PET in Neurology by providing systems with extremely high resolution and sensitivity, capable to image and quantify the activity of specific brain regions and nuclei. It is also crucial to use lower radiotracer doses, reducing study time and increasing patient comfort, making possible interactive studies.
Brain dedicated PET scanners will be decisive in this progress, either in stand-alone operation or as MR-compatible inserts. They have proven to be very safe and to provide exclusive qualitative and quantitative personalized patient information for diagnosis, treatment assessment, radiotherapy and interventional guidance7. In a parallel effort, it is expected that both PET imaging technology and radiotracers will continue to expand to new clinical applications and improve their productivity8.
The proposed solution
Oncovision has developed CAREMIBRAIN® (CMB), a revolutionary brain-dedicated PET scan based on proven proprietary technology. CMB evaluates, with unprecedented accuracy and flexibility, cerebral function and local activity at key regions / nuclei providing early diagnosis of neurodegenerative disorders, cognitive decline, brain tumors, vascular, functional and psychiatric diseases, supporting also healthy aging programs.
This system is unique in the market and offers multiple advantages over the WB PET scan such as unprecedented resolution (<1.5 mm) and sensitivity (x3 vs WB PET systems), with a very low radiotracer dose and cost-effective operation11. It allows dynamic scans, in-scan visual and auditory stimulation, optimum comfort (seated-reclined position). Its small footprint enhances its flexible installation and possible portability / mobility.
This innovative dB PET is paving the way for effective, easy and cost-effective assessment of cognitive decline and the functional confirmation / complementary diagnosis of multiple neurodegenerative diseases, primary and metastatic brain cancer, vascular, functional and psychiatric diseases. Moreover, it allows personalized, precision therapy guidance (in radiotherapy and surgery), follow up of chronic diseases treated with non-pharmacological procedures and the evaluation of pharmacological therapies’ results, covering both daily clinical neurology and advanced research needs11, 12.
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