US-based provider of cloud-based radiology service Imaging Advantage (IA) has collaborated with the faculty members from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard Medical School / Massachusetts General Hospital (titled Singularity Healthcare) to develop an artificial intelligence x-ray engine.

Singularity is developing an artificial intelligence engine which will be integrated into IA’s patented exam routing technology to enable an instant pre-reading of digital x-rays and determine potential areas of injury and disease, while continuously learning from IA’s expanding database of 7 billion images.

The algorithm will be applied before x-ray images are relayed to one of the 500 board-certified radiologists connected in the cloud to IA’s platform.

"We believe diagnostics is the gateway for the integration of artificial intelligence in healthcare."

X-ray exams constitute 50% of all radiology tests in healthcare, radiology is the limiting factor in hospital emergency department patient flow and treatment.

The research initiative will include MIT’s Sloan School of Management Gordon Y Billard professor of management SP Kothari who will lead the project collaborating with Harvard Medical School professor of radiology and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) vice-chairman of radiology Dr Sanjay Saini advising on the imaging quality and utility to radiologists, and MIT Institute for Data, Systems and Society principal research scientist Kalyan Veeramachaneni.

Imaging Advantage president and COO Brian Hall said: "We believe diagnostics is the gateway for the integration of artificial intelligence in healthcare.

"Once we successfully develop this mechanism for X-Rays, we see the potential to expand the technology to CTs and MRIs, as well as other areas of time consuming diagnostic testing.

"The goal is to create a useful tool for radiologists, who are in shortage both domestically and internationally.

"Radiologists will continue to be indispensable."

Hall also stated that the solution developed by Singularity will provide a fast, accurate and less expensive diagnostic testing in the field of radiology.