Australian medical technology company LBT Innovations Ltd, Adelaide, Australia, and joint venture company Clever Culture Systems AG (CCS), Bäch, Switzerland, have installed their APAS Independence instrument at St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne, Australia, to commence its first global in situ evaluation.

APAS is a breakthrough artificial intelligence technology for the automated imaging, image analysis, interpretation, and reporting of growth on microbiology plates after incubation. The APAS Independence, which is about the size of a large photocopier, is designed to improve the clinical efficiency of microbiology laboratories and enables faster diagnosis and reporting of infectious diseases. The FDA-cleared instrument is based on LBT’s intelligent imaging and machine learning software.

Placement of the instrument at St Vincent’s Hospital will enable evaluation of its performance and provide valuable feedback from a diagnostic pathology laboratory. Training of the hospital’s pathologists on the APAS Independence instrument has already begun.

Microbiologists and scientists currently individually review agar plates, of which up to 95% return negative results. The APAS Independence automatically reviews and sorts plates into stacks of positives, negatives, and plates to be reviewed, at a rate of 200 plates per hour.

Feedback on the St Vincent’s operation is expected during the fourth quarter of 2017. The APAS Independence will undergo further commercial evaluations over the next 18 months in additional microbiology centers of excellence globally to establish a network of reference laboratories. Successful deployment at the reference laboratories is a precursor to larger scale commercial rollout of the APAS Independence.

For more information, visit LBT Innovations.