Three CREB Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya projects receive awards in the 2021 CaixaResearch Validate call

Three projects of the Centre for Research in Biomedical Engineering (CREB) of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya · BarcelonaTech (UPC), led by researcher Alexandre Perera, have been selected in the 2021 CaixaResearch Validate call: Virtual Perfusionist, MV-Optimizer and Vincer.AI.

Virtual Perfusionist is a 3D game-based training platform for operating the heart-lung machine in cardiac surgery. It is a learning resource that fuses game and simulation and recreates a real surgical intervention. The user must operate the machine according to the behaviour of the virtual patient and communicate with the rest of the clinical team. Led by UPC researcher Daniela Tost and developed in collaboration with the Hospital Clínic and the University of Barcelona (UB), this serious game offers an economical and accessible form of training that is complementary to conventional training and physical simulation. Aimed primarily at perfusion students and professionals, its main objective is to significantly improve their technical and communication skills, thus increasing their emotional well-being and contributing to safer operations. The researchers Ariel von Barnekow and Núria Bonet (CREB), Maria Teresa Mata (Hospital Clínic) and Carmen Gomar (UB) are also taking part in developing the platform.

MV-Optimizer (MV-O), a proposal led by researcher Leidy Yanet from the Biosignal Analysis for Rehabilitation and Therapy (BIOART) research group at the CREB UPC, is a technology designed to support clinicians in using mechanical ventilation on critically ill patients more efficiently. MV-Optimizer integrates complex mathematical models that can be trained and dynamically self-adjusted with patients’ clinical data and offers clinicians the possibility of testing various ventilator settings, which simulates the patient’s response to these settings and aids decision making. This will improve the care of ventilated patients and reduce the duration of hospital admissions by 30%, which will considerably reduce healthcare and occupancy costs in ICUs.CREB researcher Miguel Angel Mañanas is also involved in the project.

Vincer.AI, a spin-off led by Alexandre Perera, a researcher of the CREB UPC and its director, and Pol Solà de los Santos, a researcher in the Bioinformatics and Biomedical Signals Laboratory (B2SLab) research groupaims to become the first artificial intelligence (AI) algorithmic auditing company in healthcare. The team of experts has designed a set of audit lines that standardises quality control for AI healthcare models, including a database of previously identified risks in healthcare AI systems. Once the new system is audited, a cryptographic mark serves as a technology segment to verify compliance with each prediction. Granting greater confidence to AI systems will reduce the time and resources needed to translate scientific advances into clinical practice and ensure traceability, allowing end users to verify the compliance of healthcare AI providers.

These three initiatives are also part of Xartec Salut, a catalyst programme for research, development and innovation in the Catalan health technology field led by the CREB UPC.

Source: Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya

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