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Start-up develops device for early detection of oral cancers 

Sascan Meditech Pvt Ltd, a startup company, which incubated at Technology Business Incubator of Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences & Technology is launching OralScan which is a Make- in- India initiative with seed funding from the scheme National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations (NIDHI) of the Department of Science & Technology (DST). 

Oral scan was designed and developed entirely in India. According to Dr Subhash Narayanan, CEO of Sascan, oral cancer is a growing concern in India with more than 80,000 fresh cases reported each year. 

The disease has a high mortality rate because of the delay in detection. OralScan will be officially launched on Wednesday. 

Current practice relies on oral examinations using a torch light to detect early stage cancers of the oral cavity. 

Various studies have demonstrated that this screening technique is not very reliable and often oral potentially malignant lesions (OPMLs) go undetected in the early stages. 

Even experienced clinicians find it difficult to locate the optimal site for a biopsy based on conventional oral examination. 

This leads to multiple biopsies, increased expenditure and false negative reports which can delay diagnosis and outcome. 

It is in this context that the OralScan, a handheld imaging device developed by Sascan for screening, detection of OPMLs and biopsy guidance becomes relevant. 

A software assists the surgeon in taking biopsy from the most appropriate site which is likely to confirm the diagnosis of malignancy. 

The device will be marketed at a price of Rs 5.9 Lakhs. 

This will be a one- time investment for hospitals and laboratories without any additional costs of consumables. 

OralScan has also undergone multicentric trials covering 6 hospitals across the country. 

Sascan, has already obtained ISO 13485 certification Indian patent has been granted for the technology and US patent has been filed. 

OralScan has also undergone multicentric trials covering 6 hospitals across the country. 

 

Report: Tapas Bhattacharya

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