NEC develops AI technology for Barrett’s neoplasia detection

10 June 2021


Trained with over one million Barrett’s oesophagus endoscopy images, the WISE VISION Endoscopy will be available in Europe soon. NEC Corporation has developed an artificial intelligence (AI) technology that can aid doctors in identifying neoplasia in Barrett’s oesophagus while performing endoscopic procedures.

The company noted that this software is the first of its kind to be CE mark-compliant. It is set to be launched as WISE VISION Endoscopy and will be made available in Europe soon.

The software is linked to endoscopy processors and alerts customers automatically on possible Barrett’s neoplasia from pictures taken during endoscopic procedures.

In addition, it features a visible user interface for intuitive action and facilitates doctors to continue with examinations effortlessly.

NEC worked with European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy Research Committee chair professor Pradeep Bhandari to develop this AI software.

Bhandari noted: “Once the neoplasia is found, the system takes a still image and transfers it to the top right corner of a screen as a reference image for endoscopists.

“It doesn’t stop here, as it also has a heat map which shows the area of the AI-predicted neoplasia.”

Trained with nearly one million Barrett’s oesophagus endoscopy images, WISE VISION Endoscopy also includes the knowledge of specialised endoscopists.

To develop the software, NEC used its face recognition technology that is US National Institute of Standards and Technology-assessed and part of the company’s AI technologies portfolio, NEC the WISE.

WISE VISION Endoscopy was found to detect approximately 90% of Barrett’s neoplasia during clinical assessment.

The software could sustainably lower the neoplasia miss rate during endoscopy procedures and enhance the outcome in Barrett’s oesophagus patients globally, NEC noted.

Barrett’s oesophagus is a pre-cancerous condition in which the oesophagus’ inner lining is replaced by a lining that is similar to that of the stomach.

Furthermore, Barrett’s oesophagus patients have a 30 to 40-fold increased risk of developing oesophagus cancer as against normal people.

If this cancer is identified in the early stages, it can be removed via an endoscope, thereby curing the patient.

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