Recent technological advances are transforming the medical technology field. European companies and research institutes are working on solutions aimed at improving knowledge and response to genetics, diseases that affect millions of people, and public health emergencies.
How will this momentum continue in 2024? And which technologies will further advance medical innovation?
From predicting genetic diseases to improving cancer treatments to producing mutation-resistant vaccines, AI is already proving to be an invaluable tool in solving some of healthcare’s biggest challenges. .
“2024 will see significant advances in the tech-bio space, particularly in the promising field of generative AI for drug discovery,” Diana Rotger, Ph.D., principal at APEX Ventures, told TNW. Dr. Rotger expects more companies in this field to advance to the clinical development stage, which includes both in silico and in vivo approaches.
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The trend toward enhanced diagnostic capabilities is also likely to continue, especially thanks to LLM’s ability to process large amounts of information.
“AI algorithms can analyze vast amounts of medical data such as patient records, genetic information, and imaging test results,” said Dag Larsson, CEO and founder of Doccla, a health tech startup that offers virtual hospital wards. .
“AI can help with early disease detection by identifying subtle patterns and correlations that may not be visible in small datasets. This allows for more accurate disease detection, especially in complex and heterogeneous patient populations. This can lead to significant predictions and insights.”
Another trend is to take pressure off the health care system, said Julia Hawkings, general partner at venture capital firm Local Globe.
“Certainly, GenAI has the potential to enhance medical research, aid drug discovery, and diagnose disease, but its power over the next year will come from its ability to radically reinvent more obscure tasks. ” she points out. These include communications regarding administrative processes, clinician learning support, insurance and provider workflow automation, and early disease detection.
The quantum revolution may still be years away, but industries (and nations) are already riding the wave of potentially life-changing technology. Particularly in the medical field, quantum computing is expected to reach a global market size of $1 billion (900 million euros) by 2030, which indicates the importance of quantum computing technology in the future of the medical field. This confirms that it is increasing.
Thanks to the ability of quantum computers to process trillions of pieces of information simultaneously, exponentially faster than traditional computers, the impact of quantum on medicine could be profound, to say the least.
“There are a range of quantum technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the medical technology sector,” Ilana Wisbey, CEO of UK-based Oxford Quantum Circuit (OQC), told TNW. Told.
One of them is quantum simulation. This is the ability of high-quality qubits in quantum computers to model molecules and simulate chemistry. Wisbee said quantum simulation could have a “potentially significant impact” on drug discovery and currently incurable diseases.
“In theory, quantum computers can simulate chemistry and molecules with unprecedented precision, allowing us to simulate complete problems in drug development,” she explains.
“This will allow pharmaceutical companies to simulate larger, more complex molecules – how they act and react – when developing new drugs in ways that traditional computers cannot. The result is billions of dollars in research and development savings and faster time-to-market for these new drugs. “
Another potential benefit lies in the power of quantum machine learning, which can enable “faster and more accurate data pattern identification, classification, data compression, and image classification.” This could enhance diagnostic tools and lead to the creation of predictive models of disease.
Virtual care, remote monitoring, VR
“2024 will see continued use and streamlining of telemedicine options to better meet the clinical needs of more patients while reducing pressure on hospital capacity and staff.” said Dr. Owain Rees-Hughes, founder and CEO of Synapsys, London. He told TNW that he is based on a platform that provides planned and emergency treatment advice and guidance.
Dr Hughes believes solutions such as virtual wards and remote monitoring devices like wearables will become more widespread next year, with a global market value reaching an estimated $30.06 billion (€27.3 billion) in 2023. That’s what it means.
According to Amanda Philpott, co-founder and CEO of auditory training app eargym, further growth in wearable and health apps in the coming years will lead to an under-recognized problem that will have a serious impact on both individuals and resources. Another benefit will be awareness of the health conditions being treated, he said.
One example is heart health. “We are seeing a dramatic increase in demand for heart monitoring apps that educate users about the importance of understanding the invisible disease and its associated symptoms, which can affect millions of people around the world. ” she says.
Meanwhile, virtual reality and mixed reality will come to the fore next year as surgery wait times rise to record levels across Europe, says an Oslo-based holographic tool for 3D surgical planning. Alison Sandsett, CEO of Holocare, which provides the kit, predicts.
“In 2024, surgeons will be able to wear VR headsets and visualize a patient’s organs through interactive holograms to plan smarter and safer surgeries,” Sandset told TNW.
The technology’s ability to provide a shared spatial view of a patient’s anatomy benefits not only surgical planning but also face-to-face and virtual communication between teams, and also enables collaboration across geographic boundaries, she said. explain.
Outside of the operating room, VR and MR will be a ‘catalyst for the future workforce’ as they allow medical professionals to practice in a risk-free virtual environment, speed up the learning process and reduce the risk of burnout. There is a possibility.
Over the next year, “these developments will shape what will become the new standard of surgical practice,” according to Sunset.