A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

VirtualScopics (Rochester, New York), a provider of imaging solutions using biomarkers for pharmaceutical development, reported that it is providing imaging and analytical services to Wyeth Pharmaceuticals (Madison, New Jersey) for a Phase I clinical trial for a biopharmaceutical being studied as a potential treatment for muscle wasting.

Stuart Shapiro, MD, president and CEO of VirtualScopics, said, "Wyeth is one of the world's largest research-driven pharmaceutical and health care products companies, and we are proud to have them as a client."

VirtualScopics uses its suite of image analysis algorithms to detect and analyze biological structures from medical image data, such as computed tomography (CT) or MRI scans.

VirtualScopics' computer-assisted analysis technique is designed for faster, more reliable detection of disease progression or therapeutic benefit, accelerating the clinical trial process, and providing for future diagnostic applications. The company's software algorithms can process hundreds of separate medical images taken during an MRI or CT session into a single, anatomically accurate 3-D model, providing clinical researchers a previously unobtainable source of reproducible data including the characterization of minute changes over time, according to the company. The firm evolved from research initially undertaken at the Medical Center and School of Engineering at the University of Rochester.

In other grant news:

Stentor (Brisbane, California), which focuses on the distribution, management and storage of digital medical images, said that it has been awarded a General Services Administration (GSA) contract with the federal government. The contract enables U.S. federal agencies, as well as state and local government agencies, to purchase Stentor's iSite PACS (picture archive and communications system) at pre-negotiated rates.

The GSA is one of three federal central management agencies that provide policy leadership and expertly managed space, supplies, services and solutions, it says, "to enable federal employees to accomplish their missions." The GSA provides government agencies with a list of pre-approved and qualified vendors that can do work for the federal government. As an approved PACS supplier, Stentor can sell its iSite PACS to federal government customers through December 2009.

"We hope that our solution can assist government hospitals and clinics to increase productivity and efficiency as well as reduce costs," said Victoria Hibbits, vice president of national accounts at Stentor.

Image Management Systems and Support (IMSS; Fort Lauderdale, Florida), a company specializing in medical imaging systems integration, has awarded AT&T a three-year contract to provide a secure networking solutions. The agreement expands an existing relationship with AT&T for voice and data services. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

IMSS provides subscribing healthcare institutions including hospitals, laboratories and physicians a secure online environment in which to store and share digital medical images and reports. Storing documents with IMSS is designed to enhance and expand medical experts' abilities to consult on diagnoses or recommended treatments, regardless of location or time of day.

AT&T will deploy an Internet Protocol Virtual Private Network and host the IMSS web servers in its Arizona Internet Data Center (IDC), ensuring around-the-clock access to data stored there and providing business continuity capabilities. AT&T owns and operates 26 IDCs around the world.

IMSS has been serving healthcare institutions primarily in the southeastern U.S. since 1999. The company is finalizing plans for facilities in Shanghai, China.