Professor Jongho Lee B and graduate students of SNU college of engineering, develop a technique that shortens MRI scan time (Daehak News, 20181008)

2018-10-11l Hit 307

Comparison of MRI scan results of Airs Medical solutions (top) and preexistent solutions (bottom). From left to right, accelerated 2, 4, 8 times, respectively, and the original copy on the far right

Graduate students of SNU college of engineering (Dean, Kookheon Char) developed a method that can significantly reduce the time consumed during an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) examination. This technology can be applied directly to off-the-shelf MRI devices.

The venture company AIRS Medical (CEO Jinkyu Ko), which started from Laboratory for Imaging Science and Technology (Supervisor: Prof. Jongho Lee B) in the department of electrical and computer engineering, College of Engineering, SNU, applied Artificial Intelligence to MRI, reducing the scan time to less than a quarter of the existing solutions without degrading the image quality. The developed AI technique is a new solution that reduces the inconvenience of patients and eases the burden on the medical system.

In order to reconstruct real-time high-speed images, this solution applies AI techniques complementarily to an existing image reconstruction method which is based on mathematical modeling. With currently deployed MRIs, when the scanning process is accelerated to 4 or 8 times to reduce the time, a severe distortion occurs on the image. However, AIRS Medical succeeded in reconstructing the original images without distortion even from 8 times accelerated images.

Also, by applying this technology the inconvenience the patients experience from long examination hours can be reduced. The MRI scan time per patient would be reduced to around 10 minutes, which means significantly less waiting time for patients and higher profits for hospitals by serving many patients at a given time.

Professor Jinhee Jang from Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital Department of Radiology said, “With this technology, it will be possible to provide patients with medical imaging service through faster and more precise examinations. Also, hospitals can maintain highly reliable examination quality while flexibly adapting to the new revenue structure.”

There will be a pilot service of the products mounted with the AIRS Medical technology at SNU hospital. The actual marketing of the products will commence at the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, which will be held next year in Montreal, Canada.

Translated by Kyungjin Lee, English Editor of Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering,