The University of York hopes to transform the landscape of MRI scans through a groundbreaking partnership with the innovative U.S-based tech company, Vizma.AI.

The collaboration promises to reshape the future of medical imaging by revolutionising the capabilities of MRI scanners, elevating them to the level of precision akin to biopsy diagnostics.

The team behind the partnership say it will improve the diagnosis of a range of health conditions from cancer to traumatic brain injury.

A licensing agreement between the two grants Vizma.AI access to patents arising from the pioneering work of Professor Simon Duckett and his research group at the Centre for Hyperpolarisation in Magnetic Resonance (CHyM), at the University of York.


For over a decade, Professor Duckett and his team have been at the forefront of developing hyperpolarisation techniques for MRI, a technology the university says is poised to redefine how we visualise and understand the inner workings of the human body.

Hyperpolarised MRI, also known as quantum-enhanced MRI, relies on specially formulated contrast agents that enhance the clarity of cellular and tissue dynamics in MRI images. 

This advancement provides clinicians and researchers with unprecedented insights into the intricate mechanisms underlying diseases, their progression, and responses to treatment.

Professor Duckett said: “MRI is a well known approach used to create images of the body for diagnostic purposes. For more than a decade our researchers have filed nine patents that have the potential to enable faster access to far superior images which can even link biochemical change to disease.

“Through our partnership with Vizma.AI, we're poised to translate these innovations from the lab to the clinic, ultimately improving patient care and outcomes."

One of the key hurdles in commercialising hyperpolarised MRI has been the scalability and affordability of preparing these injectable contrast agents.

However, with this collaboration, there's a promise of overcoming these challenges, potentially driving down the costs associated and making them more accessible to a broader population.

Vizma.AI, is a technology company headquartered in North Carolina, which will use quantum-enhanced MRI hardware and software into clinical workflows.

CEO Dr Carlos Dedesma said: "Our vision is to empower MRI facilities worldwide with cutting-edge technology that puts enhanced diagnostic capabilities at the forefront of patient care."

“Through this strategic partnership between the University of York and Vizma.AI, the future of MRI technology is poised for a paradigm shift, promising unparalleled advancements in medical imaging and diagnosis on a global scale.”