A Pediatric Simulated Dosimetry Platform for Clinical Use
Personalized internal dosimetry is of great interest in children undergoing medical imaging examinations with ionizing irradiation. PediDose aims to exploit advanced Monte Carlo simulations, anthropomorphic computational phantoms, and Artificial Intelligence techniques to develop a realistic, simulated dosimetry database. The goal is to develop a novel software that will offer clinicians the possibility to assess internal pediatric dosimetry and optimize Nuclear Medical Imaging clinical protocols in terms of personalized prediction models.
TECHNOLOGIES USED: HPC, AI, Monte Carlo Simulations
Radiation dose calculations from radiopharmaceuticals in nuclear imaging like PET (with applications in oncology, neurology or cardiology) have been a challenge to the scientific community and the clinicians, as no commercial solutions for personalised dosimetry existed so far. In particular, developing and optimising dosimetry protocols in pediatric applications are of great social interest in the worldwide health community as children are much more sensitive to ionising radiation than adults.
Currently, in clinical practice, there are only rough estimations of the administered dose that a child should receive. Obtaining improved dosimetry protocols for children is difficult through standard clinical practices such as experimental dosimetry and validation. Related to the stochastic nature of nuclear radiation, statistical computing approaches like Monte Carlo simulation can provide ground truth for dosimetry, but are a challenge to integrate into clinical practice, among others due to their computational cost.
Current solutions and the traditional approaches lack personalisation of dose assessment on a patient basis. In the competitive market of nuclear medicine products, IKH sells its evorad® suite and seeks to strengthen Evorad’s value proposition by introducing innovative decision-supporting software tools within the radiological workflow. There is an opportunity to penetrate in the clinical dosimetry software market, but this requires multidisciplinary effort and access to advanced computing facilities, to overcome both the missing personalisation and the practical limitations of using compute-intensive methods in clinical practice.
In order to tackle the challenge, IKH and BIOEMTECH joined forces to exploit all the appropriate tools for creating a precise dosimetry software (“PediDose”) to accurately evaluate the absorbed dose at organ level
The resulting software allows clinicians to assess internal dosimetry and optimise Nuclear Medical imaging clinical protocols towards personalised medicine. In order to obtain a realistic simulated dosimetry database, Monte Carlo simulation was applied to about 30 advanced anthropomorphic phantoms covering 31 organs. By employing HPC resources (129 parallel jobs), a speedup by a factor of 80 was achieved, permitting to reach a high level of accuracy in predicting the absorbed doses of radiation in these organs. Subsequently, a predictive dosimetry model based on machine learning algorithms was developed and trained with these computed results, thus permitting an individual dose calculation for each new pediatric patient, taking into account their personalised anatomical characteristics.
Business and social impact
PediDose is expected to significantly strengthen IKH and BIOEMTECH in the EU industry of medical software and provide SMEs with great advantages in this highly competitive area, addressing both the European and US Market.
PediDose has been technically integrated into the evorad® suite, a competitive healthcare software for medical imaging (PACS) from IKH. After further maturation and obtaining CE Mark and FDA approval, this add-on is expected to generate additional net income for IKH of about €1.25 Mio within the next five years.
Moreover, PediDose will be offered on a license basis to other vendors of medical software. Further business opportunities are anticipated in an extension of the approach for adult patients or specific groups like obese patients or pregnant women.
PediDose will permit BIOEMTECH to enter the medical software market (personalised dosimetry) through business partnership with IKH and utilise the existing customers of BIOEMTECH’s imaging devices for extending its portfolio.
Personalised dosimetry supported by Pedidose can lower administered doses and minimize radiation’s harmful effects for a very large number of treated children (11% of the Nuclear Medicine departments perform more than 1,000 pediatric studies per year). The proposed solution provides a great potential for expansion to other patient groups, utilising the developed methodology.
- Significant strengthening of value proposition for IKHs product Evorad® achieved.
- €1.25m additional total income expected through increased sales of Evorad®.
- Medical market entry for BIOEMTECH facilitated through partnership with IKH.
Partner GRNET is part of the NCC Greece.