As part of its ongoing commitment of working towards a Healthier India and accelerating solutions to tackle cancer early, GE Healthcare, a unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE),today unveiled Discovery IQ, an advanced Positron Emission Tomography/ Computed Tomography (PET/CT) molecular imaging system designed in India for the world. The new Discovery IQ is the result of $15 Million (INR 90 Crores) investment, and 3 years of close collaborative development with Indian nuclear medicine physicians and oncologists. The new GE Discovery IQ PET/CT comes with advanced early disease detection capabilities as well as measurements to understand patients response to cancer treatment. Discovery IQ is another feather in the cap for GE Healthcares India innovation capabilities.
Three years back, we promised to develop an advanced yet affordable PET/CT to improve access to early cancer detection. We are extremely proud that we have realized that commitment today with the launch of Discovery IQ – an advanced PET/CT that is 40% more affordable and can usher in personalized treatment for the patient. We are extremely thankful to the Indian healthcare providers for their close collaboration and insights into their needs that helped develop this important weapon against cancer, said Terri Bresenham, President& CEO of GE Healthcare South Asia.
Molecular imaging is the epitome of healthcare imaging technologies. GE is very pleased to demonstrate to the world Indias capabilities in developing the most sophisticated medical technologies. she added.
A state of the art imaging centre requires an imaging system “ PET/CT to scan the human body and a cyclotron to produce bio-markers that can light up cancer cells. However, setting up of a molecular imaging centre is very expensive and calls for an investment as high as $ 5 Mn (INR 30 Crores). The huge investment has prevented proliferation of this early detection technology in India. With the support of several Indian entrepreneurs over the past few years, GE has built a robust network of cyclotrons to halve the investment required to set up a molecular imaging centre. Designing an affordable technology solution in India – GEs Discovery IQ, is another bold step GE has taken to help improve affordability and accessibility to this critical tool that can enable early detection and treatment of cancer. Moreover, GEs new Discovery IQ is scalable to fit the needs of the many Indian healthcare providers and is built on a platform that is upgradable on site to meet the increasing demands of a hospital, making it a secure and affordable long term investment to provide continuous, superior care over the years.
The value of PET/CT for diagnostic imaging in oncology is well established with its capabilities to combine anatomic and functional aspects of the body to provide a complete picture of patients health. But now, even brighter possibilities are coming to light, with new quantitative tools that enable more consistent PET measurements.
Did you know approximately 70% of cancer patients dont respond to their initial chemotherapy treatment? Accurately determining whether or not a patient is responding is critical, as enduring treatment is one of the toughest challenges that both patients and clinicians ever face. When using CT alone, up to 6 cycles of chemotherapy may be required to determine if the treatment is effective for that patient. PET/CT can help quickly determine treatment effectiveness, because metabolic changes in a tumor occur earlier than structural changes, PET/CT can help physicians determine how well a treatment is working after as few as 1 to 2 cycles of chemotherapy. Thus PET/CT plays critical role in treatment monitoring and can reduce overall cost to patient.
We know that cancer patients dont always respond to their initial course of treatment, said R Sureshkumar, General Manager, PET/CT Product Development, GE Healthcare. If we can give clinicians a more accurate and reliable solution to determine early whether the treatment is working or not, they will be able to tailor a regimen of therapies according to individual patient response and needs.
One of the key innovations that comes with GEs Discovery IQ is Q.Clear^ technology that can provide up to two times improvement in PET quantitative accuracy (SUVmean) and up to two times improvement in image quality (signal-to-noise ratio). The reconstruction technology shows the advantage of full convergence PET imaging without any compromise between quantitation and image quality.
With affordable Discovery IQ PET/CT from GE Healthcare, PET/CT can become an integral part of cancer care management for every cancer centres in India. Clinicians will now have ready access to tools that will allow evidence based and cost effective treatment. Together with our customers, we are focused on improving access, quality and affordable cancer care for the patient, said N R Balamurugan, Director, Oncology, GE Healthcare South Asia.
GE Healthcare is at work for a healthier India and is focusing on some of the toughest healthcare challenges India faces today “ lowering maternal and infant deaths; enable early detection of cancer for early treatment, addressing heart disease early etc. GE Healthcare pioneered innovation of healthcare imaging technologies in India for India and the world to enhance access to quality healthcare at affordable costs to more people. Till date GE Healthcare has rolled out 24 such solutions and with Discovery IQ PET/CT we celebrate a quarter century of innovations from our India R&D Centre.