2019 Clifford Paterson Medal and Prize
Dr Richard Theodore Grant, Dr Shima Ghasemi Roudsari, and Dr Abbas Al Shimary for the development and application of sensors and algorithms to detect and analyse the magnetic field of the heart (magnetocardiography, MCG) for the rule-out of cardiac conditions.
All three members of the team have research-based backgrounds and completed their studies in Yorkshire at the Universities of Sheffield and Leeds. One of their biggest achievements together has been taking a proof of concept from a university Physics laboratory and successfully adapting it into a medical device. They have been instrumental in all aspects of device development from the design of sensors using finite element Multiphysics modelling, to the organisation of clinical trials, and to the development of statistical models to differentiate between cardiac conditions. They have also supported both FDA clearance (Oct 2017) and CE marking (Nov 2016) for a first-generation medical device which is currently undergoing large-scale clinical trials in hospitals across the UK and USA.
Dr Richard (Theo) Grant developed compact new magnetometers which minimised sensor size, weight, and cost whilst significantly increasing sensitivity. This allowed extremely weak magnetic fields to be imaged with finer spatial resolution. This has resulted in capture of a large amount of intellectual property and the filing of several patents. Currently he is working on adapting signal processing and systems control techniques developed for the study of gravitational waves to medical devices. He is also an honorary researcher at the University of Sheffield and was awarded Young Innovator of the Year in November 2018 by the Institution of Engineering and Technology.
Dr Shima Ghasemi Roudsari started her physics PhD with company founder and Chief Scientific Officer Professor Ben Varcoe and has been integral to the technology transfer from Leeds University. She wrote medical study protocols, trained clinical staff, recruited patients, collected data in hospitals and carried out the post-trial analysis. This analysis included signal processing and machine learning. Shima is the lead author for a recent journal paper (2018) on ‘A portable prototype magnetometer to differentiate ischemic and non-ischemic heart disease in patients with chest pain’.
Dr Abbas Al Shimary is the lead research and data scientist and is focused on developing new algorithms that could be used for the ‘rule-out’ of Acute Coronary Syndrome. This resulted in several patents being filed and his algorithms potentially being used in a future commercial MCG device, pending regulatory approval. He has been instrumental in the knowledge transfer of Creavo’s algorithms to medical professionals in a number of different hospitals. He has also developed the algorithms significantly from their simple origins to include signal and image processing with machine learning to build up an accurate diagnostic model.
Together the team are key to the success of the project from start to finish: applying physics principles to design sensors for the detection of small biomagnetic signals, the development of processing algorithms, and providing a clinical diagnosis.