Iterative Scopes and Pfizer have signed an artificial intelligence-driven data sharing agreement to advance clinical trials for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

The agreement is aimed at expediting the development of potential new therapies to treat patients with IBD globally.

Under the deal, Iterative Scopes will gain access to an IBD clinical trial database of Pfizer, which will aid the former in improving its disease severity scoring algorithms.

Disease severity scoring systems, such as the Mayo Endoscopic Score (MES), are presently utilised for meeting inclusion criteria in IBD clinical trials, as well as to assess primary and secondary endpoints. 

Such metrics are subjective and based on the experience and intuition of the physician.

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Furthermore, they pose subject recruitment and workflow challenges. 

These challenges can be resolved by combining computational algorithms of Iterative Scopes with existing colonoscopy imagery to decide on eligibility for the trials. 

The computational software automates colonoscopy video interpretation, aiding the trial investigators to attain standardised MES scores for individual patients.

Iterative Scopes Engineering senior vice-president Jean-Pierre Schott said: “We are excited to harness machine learning and computer vision to ultimately aid physicians and help them improve clinical outcomes for IBD patients earlier and with greater success. 

“This agreement will leverage certain Pfizer patient research, along with the Iterative Scopes technological advancements to assess colon health faster and with greater granularity, and possibly improve the quality of life for thousands of patients.”

In December last year, Iterative and its investors raised $150m in a Series B funding round.