Pathologists will no longer have to manually check liver tissue samples for disease in Singapore, after the country approved a new imaging system for use throughout the island.
Known as Laennec, the system was developed by Singapore based medical technology firm HistoIndex. Speaking to the Straits Times, Gideon Ho, HistoIndex Chief Executive, highlighted the benefits to medics. He said: “In conventional microscopy, when staining is applied on the slide, it is like slapping an artefact on the tissue.
“If you take an image of the sample, it is an artefact that you are looking at and not the tissue in its truest form. This leads to inconsistent observations and discrepancies in diagnosis. As the Laennec system does not require staining, anatomical details are clearly visible and fibrotic changes in the tissue can be distinguished easily.”
Ho continued: “Detecting the severity and treatment of the disease has long been a health challenge globally, and from interactions with clinicians and researchers we found that there was no proper solution for the accurate assessment of liver fibrosis, which occurs in most types of chronic liver disease."
Chronic liver disease is an issue throughout the Far East, with Singapore being no exception. Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) is the most common condition, with estimates suggesting that it affects almost a third of Asia’s population.
It is now hoped that HistoIndex’s technology can help lead a fightback against the issue and the more severe form, Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis, after it was successfully used in American clinical studies.
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