Rebalance: Deep-tech Neuroscience Startup BrainSightAI Raises $750K in Seed Funding
1 in 6 people worldwide suffer from neuro-psychiatric and neuro-oncological disorders.
These disorders are the third-largest contributor to the global burden of disease and are projected to have an economic cost of $16.3Tn by 2030 — higher than chronic respiratory diseases, and diabetes.
For patients, it’s a race against time. The path to diagnosis and optimal management is long and winding, costing money, time, and often life. For these ailments, we need to investigate the higher-order functions of the brain such as the ones related to cognition, attention, memory, and more. But understanding these higher-order functions requires advanced imaging, data analysis methods, and visualization techniques, which are only available in the most advanced clinical or research setting.
BrainSightAI is an AI company for early screening, faster diagnosis, and management of neuropsychiatric disorders.
Laina Emmanuel, Co-founder & CEO at BrainSightAI — “The barrier to entry to using advanced imaging and connectomic analysis is so high. What this field needs is democratization of technology. While $19 Billion has been invested in neurotech companies since 2000, the field still has a high entry barrier. Not every clinical team has a neuroscientist who can understand brain data, build individualized graphs for the connections in the brain for each individual, and then mine this data for patterns. Most clinical teams do not even have the infrastructure to support this, even if they did have a neuroscientist.”
BrainSightAI is making it possible for every clinical team to make sense of neuro data even if they don’t have a neuroscientist.
Laina Emmanuel and Dr. Rimjhim Agarwal, co-founders at BrainSightAI are combining deep knowledge of psychiatry, MRI image-processing, and machine-learning for better patient outcomes.
With a Ph.D. from NIMHANS, one of the top mental health and neuroscience institutes in the world, Dr. Rimjhim is one of the few people in the world lying at the cusp of these three areas of knowledge.
Laina Emmanual comes with 14+ years of experience in healthcare consulting, policy, and software. She has worked with some of the highest impact organizations in the world including Clinton Health Access Initiative and software companies like Netapp.
“To be able to address these disorders better, the healthcare industry needs tools to predict outcomes earlier, discover new clinical and drug indications, and better understand drug and therapy responses. Such intuitive tools weren’t possible earlier. However, that is changing now. We are now at an inflection point where, with data, lots of computing power, and artificial intelligence, we can cloud-enable complex neuroscience-based workflows. Now, doctors and researchers can focus on asking questions and not on the mechanics of answering questions,” said Laina Emmanuel, Co-Founder and CEO at BrainSightAI.
Brainsight.AI participated in Rebalance Accelerator’s 2020 Cohort and we’re thrilled to announce they have raised $750K led by Stanford Angels & Entrepreneurs India with participation from Rebalance Angel Community, Entrepreneur First, Red Start Labs, and IKP Knowledge Park.
BrainSightAI is an AI-enabled application suite developed by a diverse and expert team of scientists, researchers, and designers. They enable greater precision in diagnosis and prognosis for neurological and psychiatric disorders, using AI on functional MRI, structural MRI, and digital phenotypes.
The team is currently focusing on neuro-surgical applications, using connectomic analysis to map major networks of the brain. This is very useful for pre-surgical planning. As of today, more than 50% of patients who come to a neurosurgeon are unable to follow instructions for a task-based fMRI, the only other way to map some of the basic functions of the brain.
Therefore, doctors often have to depend on intuition to figure out the impact of the surgery on the patient’s basic function. Moreover, they get no information on the higher-order functions of the brain.
BrainSightAI’s VoxelBox makes mapping effortless and the functional map of the brain is available in an hour.
“BrainSight is not just improving MRI imaging but, based on Dr. Rimjhim’s research at NIMHANs, leapfrogging the true potential of this modality to operate at the cutting edge of science, technology, and impact. BrainSight’s platform has the potential to change the global clinical paradigm for neurosurgery and neuropsychiatry, and we are excited to partner with Laina and Rimjhim on this journey,” commented Akshat Shah and Sandeep Singhal, Stanford Angels and Entrepreneurs India, in a collective statement.
Beyond neurology, connectomic analysis has shown great potential in psychiatric disorders, where it can act as an adjunct to symptomatic analysis, as well as help in identifying imaging indicators for better tracking during drug development.
They won the BIRAC BIG 15 grant from the Government of India in 2020 which enabled clinical studies to investigate alteration in brain function in Dementia.
“There’s a lot of motion around mental health but almost no revolutionary leaps in how accurately we assess and manage brain-related disorders as a healthcare ecosystem today. We cannot think of a more capable team tackling such a complex yet urgent problem” said Aishwarya Malhi & Vikas Kumar, Co-founders at Rebalance.
This investment will enable personalized medicine and rehabilitation for neurosurgical and neuropsychiatric disorders through AI-enabled large-scale modeling of the brain.
More about their work here: https://www.brainsightai.com/
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