Alzheimer’s Disease is the main cause of dementia worldwide. There is currently no easy way to diagnose it. As a result, patients get diagnosed too late, once their cognitive decline has started. Mantis Photonics AB is developing a hyperspectral camera for retinal imaging for the early screening of Alzheimer Disease via the detection of the Amyloid beta peptide. The retina displays similarities to the brain and spinal cord in terms of anatomy, functionality, response to insult, and immunology. Hence, the eye provides a unique window to the central nervous system without the need for expensive, invasive, and/or potentially harmful examinations.
This camera will fit on a fundoscope routinely used by opticians and ophthalmologists. It will be developed to detect patients with high levels of amyloid up to 15 years before their cognitive ability declines. Earlier diagnosis will considerably increase chances to adopt a healthy lifestyle to reduce/postpone the risk of getting Alzheimer as well as increasing the chance of getting treatment in time.
Required Funding: €30000
Duration: 24 Months
Measuring amyloid plaques in the brain directly with amyloid PET scan. This is a lengthy and costly procedure. FDA approved retinal camera by Optina (FDA 510(k) clearance for its Mydriatic Hyperspectral Retinal Camera (MHRC-C1) in 2020). This camera uses its own light source; it cannot be mounted on a fundoscope and is very expensive. Estimated at >50k Euro, hindering mass adoption. Mantis Photonics is developing a hyperspectral camera that can be easily added to routine fundoscopy at opticians and ophthalmologists for the detection of amyloid deposits in the retina. There is peer-reviewed proof-of-concept research supporting hyperspectral retinal imaging to classify AD patients vs controls. The team is seeking bridge funding until their seed round later this year to collect in vivo data in mice/humans of their camera.
The retina amyloid detection camera is already FDA approved and there is peer-reviewed proof-of-concept research supporting hyperspectral retinal imaging to classify AD patients. The project has future potential to become a platform diagnostic for several aging related and other conditions: AMD, diabetic retinopathy, etc. The team is strong with extensive scientific expertise in the field. The current valuation of Mantis Photonics is low ($3-4M). The product is still in the prototype stage and more data is needed on its performance in mice and humans.