We are an interdisciplinary team of computer scientists, software engineers, and imaging experts who provide collaborative research, development, and technology integration services for research centers, universities and companies working in the medical and biomedical business sectors.
We have a long history leading and contributing to open source platforms such as the Insight Toolkit (ITK) or 3D Slicer, that serve as the foundation of many medical visualization and data processing applications. We work with our commercial customers to streamline their internal software and processes, by investigating new algorithms or methodologies that upgrade existing commercial offerings or develop new products. Alone or as part of partnerships, we generate results for research publications, generate prototypes for raising venture capital, conduct first-in-human trials or pursue regulatory approval such as FDA.
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Kitware customer highlight: MuriPlan from Xstrahl – A 3D Slicer based radiotherapy treatment planning system
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Areas of Focus
Image Guided Intervention and Surgical Planning
Computational Physiological Modeling
Our open source Pulse Physiology Suite includes a well-validated and documented computational physiology engine for real time simulations of the body’s response to trauma, disease, and treatment and the Pulse Physiology Explorer is an extendable user interface for quick exploration and experimentation with the Pulse Physiology Engine.
We are integrating artificial intelligence and deep learning technologies with custom ultrasound and augmented reality hardware to advance the use of ultrasound in a variety of applications. These applications include preclinical and clinical research, pre-hospital patient triage, bedside patient monitoring, and precision needle guidance. Our integrations are enabling less-experienced operators to complete the applications with confidence, in less time, and with expert-level outcomes. They have been transitioned into several consulting projects and pending commercial products.
3D Slicer-based Applications
We help solve challenges by creating custom plugins, SDKs, applications, and software packages using 3D Slicer. Our 3D Slicer packages and modules have been used in a variety of medical and basic scientific applications such as dentistry, radiation oncology, surgical planning, and drug development. These custom applications can be deployed as local software, or they can be deployed on remote servers using Docker or on tablets. To support reproducible workflows, they can also be integrated with our Girder data management solution or with Jupyter notebooks.
3D Slicer is free, open source software that is available across different platforms. Its permissive license makes it even more flexible for the creation of custom commercial software.
Virtual Surgical Simulation and Training
Our experience with developing medical skill and procedural trainers includes developing the underlying real-time technologies such as fast numerical solvers, haptic rendering algorithms, advanced rendering for 2D and virtual reality displays, collision processing and custom hardware interfacing. These technologies are embedded in our Interactive Medical Simulation Toolkit (iMSTK) which is a C++ based open-source toolkit that aids rapid prototyping of interactive multi-modal surgical simulations. iMSTK features a highly modular and easy to use framework with a comprehensive ecosystem of tools and algorithms required to develop end-to-end medical planners and trainers.
Besides access to the technologies that are exclusive to iMSTK, applications can benefit greatly from its interfacing with Kitware’s another open-source software tools such as VTK, 3D Slicer and Pulse. Such synergistic use of disparate software has broadened the range of medical applications that are possible and has already helped Kitware successfully build virtual trainers for laparoscopic camera navigation, kidney biopsy and osteotomy procedures.
Medical Image Analysis
Cross-platform Interactive Applications
We work on a variety of cross- and multi-platform applications from desktop, to server, to mobile, to cloud, to web. The focus of these applications includes distributed 2D and 3D ultrasound, augmented reality, manual and semi-automatic segmentation and registration, quality control workflows, and surgical robotics.
At their core, these applications are built on our technologies and expertise in image processing, segmentation, registration, and surgical guidance. We work directly with customers to design workflows, user experiences, and custom interfaces from the ground up. Our development, testing, and documentation practices are aligned with FDA requirements and HIPAA technical safeguards for software products.
Dental and Craniomaxillofacial Image Analysis
Our projects and research aim to quantitatively explore how age, disease or treatment affect structures in the craniomaxillofacial (CMF) complex. This improved knowledge can help diagnose disease early, plan and measure treatment, and monitor the progression of certain conditions.
In particular, we are experts in morphometry analysis, a technique that can be used to quantitatively plan CMF surgery or measure remodeling in the bony structures of the skull. Our dental image analysis methods, for example, can quantify bone quality or tooth integrity.
We also develop CMF-specific surgical trainers to improve procedural knowledge and surgical proficiency without sacrificing patient safety.
Craniomaxillofacial and musculoskeletal 3D image analysis
Two-dimensional multiplanar assessment or panoramic reconstructions are the main ways to detect radiological signs of disease in dental or musculoskeletal scans. Though useful, two-dimensional analysis overlooks the there-dimensional nature of anatomy and can lead to misdiagnosis.
Craniomaxillofacial and musculoskeletal morphometry analysis
Studying how the shape of anatomy changes overtime, with disease or with treatment can help characterizing disease and healthy aging as well as planning and measure treatment outcomes
Oral and maxillofacial surgical simulation and training
Surgical simulation and virtual reality can improve procedural knowledge and surgical proficiency in Oral and Maxillofacial surgery training. Simulation-based training can increase familiarity with surgical instruments, procedures and knowledge without sacrificing patient safety.
What We Offer for Your Project
We provide custom research and software development, collaboration, support, training, and books to help in the above areas of focus.
Medical Computing Platforms
We have over 350 publications on topics such as surgical simulation, medical image analysis, structural shape analysis, and ultrasound image systems. These publications show up in leading conferences and journals.