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Roche, PathAI Partner to Develop, Distribute AI-Based Digital Pathology Diagnostics

NEW YORK – Roche said on Friday that it has signed a development and distribution agreement with PathAI to work on artificial intelligence-based digital pathology applications.

Under the agreement, the companies will jointly develop an embedded image analysis workflow for pathologists that will allow Boston-based PathAI's image analysis algorithms to be accessed within Roche's Navify Digital Pathology cloud software.

Financial and other terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Initially, Roche will distribute PathAI's research-use-only algorithms for multiple cancer types through its Navify platform, the cloud version of Roche's uPath software. The combination is intended to "expand support for healthcare companies' companion diagnostics and drug development programs," Roche said in a statement.

The agreement falls under Roche's Digital Pathology Open Environment program for pathologists, allowing them to securely access third-party AI-based technology along with Roche's own AI-based image analysis tools.

"Expanded access to a menu of high medical value digital diagnostic tools will further ensure that patients are accurately diagnosed and receive the most effective treatment available," Thomas Schinecker, CEO of Roche Diagnostics, said in a statement.

The agreement "brings together all of the components required to deliver and commercialize a differentiated AI-based digital pathology medical device including assay, scanner, image management system, and algorithm," PathAI CEO Andy Beck added. "We believe this partnership will unlock the potential for digital pathology in the companion diagnostics setting, offering a differentiated service to biopharma sponsors and ultimately new opportunities to improve patient outcomes."