Automated 3D Histopathology Platform

Principal Investigator:Yen-Yin Lin Ph.D. of National Tsing Hua University

Our automated 3D histopathology platform generates comprehensive pathologic images in support of quantitative data analyses and standardized digital format to overcome technology limitation of current 2D image diagnosis tools. The platform offers an innovative optical tissue clearing immersion system with high-resolution of 3D image technology, employing alternative scanning and slicing processes reliable depth control of continuous automatic images and digital parallel multi-stack images, and panoramic 3D digital images of a complete histopathological sample are produced. The platform thus allows detection in-depth and comparative analysis of normal and pathological organization. Moreover, our innovative database stores high resolution images of deep tissues suitable for building up artificial intelligence analysis, improving healthcare quality, accuracy and efficiency, and playing an indispensable link for precision medicine.

Key technologies are:

    • Immersion High Resolution 3D Image: The sample is free of dehydrated distortion and misleading judgment.
    • Whole tissue imaging system: A large volume and deep tissue image is constructed by an automated optical imaging system.
    • Standardized 3D image and big data analysis: 3D image analyses and in-depth recording pathological images facilitate development of automated cross-matching system.
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Team Introduction 

Our team employs cutting-edge technology of Taiwan to establish 3D histopathological image database for promoting industry upgrading.

Startup team: Core team is consisted of young, promising and highly motivated biomedical specialists including NTHU fellows Dr. Yen-Yin Lin, Dr. Chun-Yu Wang, Billy Huang, Dr. Hsuan-Wen Lin, and Dr. Wei-Kun Chang, and NHRI fellows Drs. Jin-Yi Tsai and Tai-Yu Chiu with abundant experience in technology development, project management, industry-academic collaboration, drug development, patent engineering and technology promotion.

Scientific and business advisory board: Board members include NTHU Professors Jia-Ling Yang, Ann-Shyn Chiang, Margaret Dah-Tsyr Chang, and CEO Hui-Lan Hsu, NHRI Director Chiung-Tong Chen, and doctors of major medical centers in Northern Taiwan with abundant experience in advanced discovery research, clinical pharmacology, organization management, innovative technology development, interdisciplinary collaboration and young talent cultivation.  Together the advisors have been issued more than 100 international invention patents and accomplished technology transfer with royalty exceeding US$1 million.  NTHU Operations Center for Industry Collaboration (OCIC) will bridge international venture capital, entrepreneurs, and alumni resources to nourish competitive strategies for business plan, start up, and industry network.

Goals and Plan
Entry Barrier

This project aims at cutting into market need with an innovative automated 3D histopathological optics imaging technology and a digital image analysis technology in support of developing precision pathology and customized services.  Currently conventional histopathology fails to meet precise medical needs mainly due to restriction of physical slicing and dehydration of the biopsy, resulting in tissue deformation, thus it is not suitable for AI auxiliary interpretation. Our innovative 3D digital histopathology technology compensates the unmet medical need of the conventional sectioning, and further provides intact deep tissue histopathological information for practical application of AI auxiliary precision medical. Combining clinical and practical experiences, we offer services in all-kinds-of-tissue preparation for precision imaging and scanning that can satisfy all sorts of imaging requirements and applications.  An efficient image analysis system for standardized commercial service will be offered to support biomedical research, clinical inspection, and cutting edge technology development.

Market Scope

According to Biomedical Informatics research data, global medical device market reaches US$398.3 billion in 2016 with CAGR of 6%, of which America and Asia-Pacific regions account for 45.7% and 21.5%, respectively.  Market development trend is affected by population aging and cancer prevalence, and diagnostic image medical products to be the dominant category.  Allied Market Research forecasts that the CAGR of global digital pathology market is expected to increase by 14.3% during 2013-2020 and up to US$5.7 billion by 2020. US market shall continue to grow due to high-quality medical system and technology driven rapid development of the overall medical equipment market. Interestingly, North America accounts for the major share of the overall digital pathology market; however, the Asia-Pacific market is expected to grow rapidly with CAGR of 22.2% and thus to be the most valuable global area.  The breakthrough of our next-generation histopathology technology fulfills unmet medical need, and is expected to drive the whole slide imaging market into the whole organization 3D image market.  Once our 3D histopathology platform penetrates the market, the revenue is expected to reach US$497 million annually.