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€1.5m EUREKA Eurostars grant awarded to treat liver tumors with AI-powered precision dosimetry in MR-guided selective internal radiotherapy (SIRT)

We congratulate Nano4Imaging GmbH and Prof. Frank Nijsen with the successful initiation of DELIVR, an exciting R&D project that was award a Eurostars grant of €1.5m!

Nano4Imaging is an innovative German company that develops key enabling technologies to accelerate the implementation of MR-guided interventions. They joined forces with Prof. Frank Nijsen – inventor of Holmium-166 microspheres for SIRT – and Prof. Jurgen Futterer at the department of Medical Imaging, Radboudumc in The Netherlands. This exciting initiative also involves a collaboration with an additional industrial partner, Quirem Medical. B.V. (now part of Terumo Corporation) specializes in the interventional applications of Holmium-166 microspheres, and ADIS SA, a developer of interactive medical software. As a result, the project brings together a strong consortium to develop a turn-key platform: DELIVR, for precision radiation dosing in MR-guided SIRT for liver tumors.

What is the project about?

Globally, liver tumours cause over 830.000 deaths per year. Several treatment options such as surgery, chemotherapy, targeted drugs and immune therapies exist, but the 5-year survival rates remain very low (<20%). Patients are often diagnosed in advanced stages, with more than 20% of the patients having an unresectable disease. In recent years, SIRT has emerged as a promising treatment modality in inoperable primary liver malignancies. SIRT involves administration of radioactive holmium microspheres via catheters into the hepatic arteries under a combination of X-ray and MR guidance, delivering a localized dose at the tumour. Unfortunately, challenges related to imprecise radiation dose estimation and difficulties in delivering the radiation accurately at the tumor location have hampered its full-scale clinical adoption. This project aims to meet these challenges to enable the highly anticipated clinical impact of SIRT.

The product to treat liver cancer that is developed in this project, comprises three complementary elements:

  1. MR visible catheters/guidewires for microsphere delivery (Nano4Imaging)
  2. Real-time catheter navigation software (ADIS) and
  3. real-time dosimetry software (Quirem). The technology is developed and tested in close collaboration with Prof. Frank Nijsen and the expertise of the Department of Medical Imaging at Radboud UMC.

Ultimately, the AI-powered platform will enable clinicians to administer a precise radiation dose accurately at the tumor location, thus drastically improving SIRT success rates and reducing side effects.

How did FFUND help?

The team of FFUND was delighted to work with this innovative consortium to translate their ideas into a comprehensive project application for Eurostars. Under the guidance of Digvijay Gahtory, a team of PhD-level consultants and medtech business experts worked together to capture the scientific excellence, and to identify the optimal product-market fit to build a strong business case.

Digivjay Gahtory – project leader & expert business consultant: “By working on this project, we were able to not only deliver a strong project plan, but also help Nano4Imaging to sharpen their overall business model. In each collaboration we aim to bring expert knowledge and insight to the business of our clients, and I am particularly happy with the success of this project, because all pieces of the puzzle came together and the product has a good chance to become available for patients when the R&D is completed successfully.”

“The top thing that stood out in the collaboration with FFUND was the involvement of a dedicated project manager who helped depict our vision and discuss our business models.”

Rudolf Schulze Vohren, CEO/CFO, co-founder Nano4Imaging GmbH

“Our ultimate dream is to have a sustainable company with dedicated professionals who live and apply our vision of radiation-free interventions to create a safer medical world.”

Rudolf Schulze Vohren, CEO/CFO, co-founder Nano4Imaging GmbH
Rudolf Schulze Vohren, CEO/CFO, co-founder Nano4Imaging
Rudolf Schulze Vohren, CEO/CFO, co-founder Nano4Imaging
About the author
Digivjay Gahtory

Digivjay Gahtory