Singapore-based medtech startup NDR Medical Technology has raised an undisclosed seed funding round from SGInnovate, making it the first early stage medtech startup to receive a direct investment from the institution.
Combining artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and computer vision for surgical procedures, NDR has developed a proprietary smart robotic guiding system for surgeries known as Automated Needle Targeting (ANT).
The system helps surgeons visualise the 3D location of the target lesion in the patient’s body by using AI and image processing. Combined with the surgeons’ skills and dexterity, the technology helps them achieve greater accuracy for needle alignment and positioning to target lesions.
It claimed to have an accuracy of up to ±1mm, with an AI-based algorithms that enable the system to use training data to continually improve accuracy. It will also complement existing imaging modalities such as C-Arm fluoroscopy, CT scan, and ultrasound.
The system has the potential to drastically reduce surgery risks and shortens learning curves for surgeons to perform advanced minimally invasive surgeries, compared to invasive surgeries using conventional procedural methods.
Patients can also experience faster recovery times and lower risks of side effects.
“Doctors have told us this system can raise the efficacy of surgical procedures to improve the clinical outcomes and lives of patients,” said SGInnovate Founding CEO Steve Leonard in a press statement.
“In addition, the underlying technology NDR has built can be applied in other industries,” he added.
NDR is currently undergoing preparatory work for pilot clinical trial, with commercial application expected to launch in the first quarter of 2020.
The startup is also working on the deployment of ANT for CT scans and ultrasound imaging. It plans to expand the use of ANT into other medical applications such as orthopaedics and anaesthesia “in the near future.”
e27 has reached out to the company to find out more details about their plans with the investment.