The Australian Government has granted A$1.1m ($740,000) to 4D Medical for the development of a new lung disease scanner.

As part of the Australian Lung Health Initiative, the company is developing the next-generation XV-Perfusion scanner for assisting medical professionals to identify lung diseases at an earlier stage.

Designed to offer detailed information, the scanner can measure both perfusion (blood flow) and ventilation (airflow) throughout the lungs of a patient during a breath.

The current investment complements the government’s prior A$28.9m funding to the Australian Lung Health Initiative, aimed at expediting the commercialisation of the new scanner.

The funding is part of six grants awarded to medical technology projects.

The grants, amounting to A$6.2m, have been awarded under the Medical Research Future Fund’s Medical Research Commercialisation Initiative.

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Furthermore, the latest investment aligns with the government’s commitment to launch a new National Lung Cancer Screening Program by July 2025.

The A$263.8m programme aims to focus on individuals aged 50 to 70 years who are heavy and/or long-term smokers and do not currently exhibit any symptoms of lung cancer.

Low-dose computed tomography screening will be utilised by the programme in mobile clinics.

4DMedical managing director and CEO professor Andreas Fouras said: “This funding will allow us to further develop 4DMedical’s XV Scanner, the world’s only dedicated respiratory imaging platform, a unique patient scan that is safe, fast and free of any need for contrast agents.

“Combining imaging of airflow and blood flow into a single analytical process represents a dramatic advancement in respiratory health care and will improve the level of clinical insight it delivers.

“It will provide the ideal test for phenotyping, early detection and evaluation of specific treatment responses for high-impact lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension and pulmonary embolism.”