The first stage of testing the microwave radiothermometry (RTM) technology for diagnosing pulmonary complications in COVID-19 patients has been summed up. Their results showed that using this technology is a convenient and safe method of screening diagnostics in patients with COVID-19 with suspected pneumonia. The research, organized by the University of Edinburgh, was carried out using a diagnostic microwave radiothermograph from RTM Diagnostics.
Microwave radiothermograph is designed for non-invasive detection of temperature anomalies of internal tissues and visualization of measurement results in temperature fields and thermograms. The device allows detecting thermal anomalies at a depth of several centimeters. It is safe and harmless for the patient and the doctor since it is not a source of ionizing radiation but only receives its radiation from the patient's internal tissues.
The experiments, prepared and implemented by Russian specialists, were carried out at the Kyrgyz State Medical Academy's Medical Center in Bishkek. The practical part of the study was participated by 195 people. As many as 149 of them were hospitalized with pneumonia symptoms; 46 were selected out of healthy volunteers without symptoms of COVID-19 and pneumonia. The tests revealed significant differences in thermal changes in bacterial forms of pneumonia and lung lesions in coronavirus infection.
The results of the RTM examination of patients were compared with radiographs and computed tomography (CT) of the chest organs. The sensitivity of the tests (the ratio of patients with COVID-19 identified by testing and the presence of pulmonary pneumonia with the actual number of cases) was about 80%. Research has shown that RTM technology can be successfully used as an alternative triage tool for patients with symptoms of COVID-19, reducing the risk of infection and spread of the virus and screening asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections.
The RTM-D2M new generation radiothermograph was registered in Russia by a subsidiary of the RVK Biofund RTM Diagnostics in 2019 and passed technical tests for compliance with the European Union requirements for medical equipment. Research using it to develop a COVID-19 differential diagnosis method is planned to continue in other countries, including Russia.
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Microwave radiothermometry is based on measuring the own electromagnetic radiation of human tissues in the microwave range, which is proportional to temperature. Changes in tissue thermal activity precede structural changes detected by X-ray and ultrasound studies. Therefore, the technology is useful for the early detection of diseases accompanied by malignant growth, inflammatory processes, degenerative phenomena, or impaired blood flow.
RTM Diagnostics LLC was established in 2014. Among the partners and investors of the company are the RVC Biofund, the Development Fund for the Skolkovo Center for the Development and Commercialization of New Technologies, the Fund for the Modernization and Development of Technologies, the Fund for Assistance to the Development of Venture Investments in Small Enterprises in the Scientific and Technical Sphere of Moscow and others. The enterprise is a member of the National Technology Initiative.
RVC Biofund LLC was established in early 2011 with the participation of Russian Venture Company (RVC) and the Venture Innovation Fund. The investment strategy of the Biofond is to invest in shares in the authorized capital of Russian companies that are infrastructure services or innovative companies in the biopharmaceutical sector of the Russian economy.
RVC Infrafond is a subsidiary fund of RVC JSC and the managing organization of subsidiaries of RVC JSC: LLC FPI RVC, Biofund RVC LLC, Civil technology of defense industry complex LLC. During its existence, the funds have provided investments to more than 100 innovative projects. In 2016, RVC Infrafund became a managing partner and investor of the Russian-Belarusian Venture Investment Fund, in 2018 — the main contributor to the NTI Venture Fund. In 2019, RVC subsidiaries managed by the RVC Infrafund withdrew from 28 venture projects. Total revenues from exits and remaining in the portfolio of companies exceeded 430 million rubles. Prospective assets in fund portfolios rose by more than 90% over the year.