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Digital Pathology

6 Mobile technology could enhance digital pathology Mobile technology could prove an important catalyst in helping take digital pathology onto a new level in delivering clinical diagnostics. For a number of years, pathology has moved more slowly than other fields that have embraced digitisation, primarily because of the costs and scale of the required equipment, according to Professor Johan Lundin, who is Research Director at the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM), hosted by the University of Helsinki. An inability to take digital microscopy out of the laboratory as a portable tool has also been a consideration, however, that is about to change with a number of mobile digital microscopes in development. Among them is Professor Lundin’s research group at FIMM and Karolinska In- stitutet in Stockholm, which has been working to pioneer the MoMic portable scanner, currently undergoing tests in Finland and Tanzania. He explained: “Having the microscope closer to patient, or where the samples are obtained, would improve the way you can perform diagnostics, making it more rapid and more accessible. It would improve the workflow of diagnostics, not just in pathology but also microbiology, cytology and forensic medicine.” The low-cost, easily transported mobile microscope and scanner developed by the Finnish researchers enabling the use of rapid, computer-assisted remote diagnostics, uses cheap components originally intended for mobile phones and connects wirelessly to a cloud server to which it transmits images for machine vision analysis. “Digital pathology, and digital microbiology, can make much use of technology from the mobile phone industry if combined with the optical components you need for microscopy,” added Professor Lundin, who is chairing sessions at the 13th European Congress on Digital Pathology in Berlin from May 25-28. MoMic is still an academic study, but what differentiates it from similar mobile microscopy projects is the scanner facility it incorporates, which is vital as it enables the digitisation of the whole sample. “If you cannot digitise the whole sample it is very diffi- cult to use it for medical diagnostics because it is extre- mely difficult to control where the important part of the sample is on the slide,” he pointed out. The advantage of MoMic is that it becomes a point-of- care device and can attain laboratory-levels of microsco- pic resolution and scan a sufficient area of the sample to enable diagnosis. Once a sample is obtained it can facilitate faster digital diagnosis or the ability to consult remotely. Professor Lundin said the MoMic project started with the goal of creating an instrument for low resource set- tings and currently five prototypes are being tested. Field studies are under way in a small hospital in a pro- vincial area of Tanzania, a country where there are less than 20 pathologists among a population of 45 million people. Thursday, May 26th • 5.30 PM • Room: Hörsaal • Round table discussions: Imaging in clinics and research J. Lundin, M.D., Ph.D., Karolinska Institute Stockholm; University of Helsinki, Finland G. Kayser, PD Dr. med., Institute of Pathology, Universitätsklinikum Freiburg, Germany

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