News | Clinical Decision Support | April 27, 2016

Imaging Advantage Launches X-ray Artificial Intelligence Engine Initiative

Cloud-based radiology provider working with leading scientists to develop deep-learning algorithm to pre-read digital X-rays and identify potential areas of injury and disease

April 27, 2016 — Imaging Advantage LLC, platform provider of cloud-based radiology service, announced the launch of a machine learning research initiative titled Singularity Healthcare. The initiative is being conducted with leading faculty members from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital. 

Singularity is developing an artificial intelligence engine to be seamlessly incorporated into IA's proprietary exam routing technology. The engine will instantly pre-read digital X-rays and identify potential areas of injury and disease, while continuously learning from IA's expanding database of 7 billion images. The algorithm will be applied before X-ray images are routed to one of the 500 board certified radiologists connected in the cloud to IA's platform.  

Combining business and academic power, Singularity seeks to provide a widely applicable solution to problems central to the U.S. healthcare system. X-ray exams constitute 50 percent of all radiology tests in healthcare, and radiology is the significant limiting factor in hospital emergency department patient flow and treatment.

The initiative brings together leading academicians from two renowned programs at MIT and Harvard.  SP Kothari, Ph.D., Gordon Y Billard Professor of Management at MIT's Sloan School of Management will lead the project, working in conjunction with Sanjay Saini, M.D., professor of radiology at Harvard Medical School and vice chairman of radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) who will advise on imaging quality and utility to radiologists, and Kalyan Veeramachaneni, Ph.D., principal research scientist at MIT's Institute for Data, Systems and Society.

Kothari added, "We have a number of opportunities for research and innovation at MIT, but were particularly intrigued by the bold initiative proposed by Imaging Advantage. Given IA's platform approach to healthcare delivery, national scale and significant imaging dataset, and the contribution of Dr. Saini from MGH, one of the leading global radiology teaching and research institutions, the project is not only achievable, but also has potential to touch nearly every person in world.  This is how we think artificial intelligence and deep learning should be developed and deployed."  

"The proposed deep-learning solution combines all layers of machine learning into a single pipeline, and then optimizes and meshes with other machine-learning algorithms on top of it," said Veeramachaneni.  "Starting this endeavor with the enormous trove of metadata in Imaging Advantage's archives, we can learn how decisions made at the initial, raw representation stage impact the final predicted accuracy efficacy."

IA hopes to eventually expand the technology to computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and other areas of time-consuming diagnostic testing.

Singularity Healthcare is being launched in Q2 of 2016. According to Kothari, "Given the advances in the field of artificial intelligence that have taken place at MIT and elsewhere, and Imaging Advantage's scale, we are not only optimistic about a successful outcome, but expect it to be realized on an accelerated schedule."

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