• Reaffirming innovation as an AI-based digital microscope while presenting new malaria data at the annual meeting of the ASTMH 2023
  • Noul’s ‘miLab™’ showed significantly higher sensitivity than that of microscopy in health centers

(Yongin, Korea) October 23, 2023 – Noul Co., Ltd., (376930.KR), an Artificial Intelligence (AI) based blood and cancer diagnostic platform company, unveiled the results of a clinical study conducted by miLab™ in two African countries. Noul participated in the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) Annual Meeting 2023 held from October 18th to 22nd, in Chicago, USA.

In a lightning talk and at the poster session held on October 20th, Dr. Cristian Koepfli from University of Notre Dame, USA, presented the key results of a clinical performance study on Noul’s miLab™ in collaboration with scientists from Gondar University, Ethiopia, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana, and Noul.

[Photo] Dr. Cristian Koepfli, Professor of the University of Notre Dame is presenting the result of malaria diagnosis using miLab™.

In the study unveiled by the poster titled “A digital microscope for the diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax parasites, including P. falciparum with hrp2/hrp3 deletion, a total of 1,649 patients enrolled in Gondar, Ethiopia, and Kumasi, Ghana were tested. In the study, the scientists compared the sensitivity and specificity of the qPCR with those of miLab™, field microscopy, and Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) respectively. Diagnosis of P. falciparum infections included cases with hrp2/hrp3 gene deletion with renders parasites ‘invisible’ to common rapid diagnostic tests.

To summarize the result, miLab™ reached a sensitivity of 94.3% and a specificity of 94% for P. falciparum diagnosis and a sensitivity of 97% and a specificity of 97.6% for P. vivax diagnosis. Diagnoses for both species showed significantly higher sensitivity and specificity of the miLab™ compared to field microscopy tests.

Also, the diagnostic results of miLab™ in P. falciparum infected patients with hrp2/hrp3 gene deletion have been released. The miLab™ diagnosed 51 out of 52 P. falciparum infections with hrp2 deletion. The deletion of hrp2/3 gene is a key issue in diagnosing P. falciparum malaria infection, especially in areas with high prevalence of the deletion, which increases the need for innovative diagnostic methods such as miLab™.

Dr. Cristian Koepfli, Professor of University of Notre Dame, said “Also in diagnosis, ‘seeing is believing’. The ability and reliability of the miLab™ to show the parasite on a screen is a major benefit over other diagnostic methods. This new study in Ethiopia and Ghana confirmed the clinical performance of miLab™ as a reliable new tool in the diagnosis of P. falciparum and P. vivax malaria. We expect the potential to address the global challenge of malaria diagnosis, including the high applicability of miLab™ in diagnosing parasites with the deletion of the hrp2/3 genes.”

The results of the study presented at the poster session by Dr.Cristian Koepfli will be published in an international scientific journal.

Dr. Taehwan Kim, Managing Director of noul GmbH (Noul Europe) said, “Noul’s miLab™ is an innovative digital microscope technology that attracts the attention of the international community as a cost-effective diagnostic device in countries with high malaria incidence. Noul will fulfill the market’s expectation by accumulating and making public reliable data on miLab™, as well as develop business opportunities in tropical infectious diseases, that have been among Noul’s areas of interest, on top of the fully commercialized malaria diagnosis.”

Noul’s miLab™ is highly recognized by the international community for its innovations in the field of blood and tissue diagnosis. It was introduced as the most advanced digital microscope and fully integrated bench-top platform in the 2022 annual report of UNITAID, an international drug and diagnostic device purchase facility.

In March 2023, Noul commenced the R&D for supporting malaria control with the RIGHT Foundation (Research Investment for Global Health Technology), an international public-private partnership funding agency that supports global health R&D, to undertake a three-year clinical trial and cost-effectiveness analysis of malaria products.

At the annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH), Noul explored opportunities for building public health networks and business collaboration through the exhibition booth to introduce miLab™ and its malaria and cervix products.

ASTMH, the world’s largest public health society that has a history of 120 years, strives to propagate the global health recognition for reducing the risk of tropical infectious diseases via promoting annual meetings where Noul has participated in for several years. Major public health-related national and international organizations, governments, academia, and private sectors have attended the meeting.