Seoul-based Mediwhale has announced that it has closed a $9m Series A funding round with investors from the US and South Korea.

The company will use the funds to establish entry into the US market.

Mediwhale already has approvals in the EU, the UK, and South Korea. The investment round was led by SBI Investment with Woori Venture Partners and HeartX Fund joining as new investors.

Mediwhale’s Reti-Intelligence leverages non-invasive retinal scans through a traditional fundus camera combined with trained deep-learning algorithms to detect disease risks. The technology focuses on cardiovascular, kidneys, eyes and ageing to detect disease risks before symptoms appear. The company’s Reti-Eye shows a minimum of 96% accuracy while its Reti-CVD cardiovascular product predicts disease risk comparably to a cardiac computerised topography.

The use of AI in healthcare is expanding rapidly – AI in the industry was worth $1.5bn in 2019, according to GlobalData. Its use has relieved pressures on healthcare systems, freed up clinical time, and reduced costs.

GlobalData medical analyst Alexandra Murdoch says: “AI is expected to become a key driver of medical device innovation and the use of AI will likely increase in 2023. There are many good uses for AI in the medical device industry, such as data management, remote surgery, diagnostic and procedural assisting, clinical trials, and more. AI has the capacity to improve medical device manufacturing efficiency and reduce risk through machine learning.”

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Woori Venture Partners director Sungyeop Jang said: “The digital health care market is growing rapidly thanks to the development and application of AI technology. As validated in the top peer-reviewed medical journals, Mediwhale has shown great potential to set a new biomarker in the diagnosis and prevention of cardiovascular disease.”