PS3’s Cell Broadband Engine helping in medical imaging advancements

PS3's Cell Broadband Engine helping in organ imaging advancements - Image 1We know that you are already proud of the Cell Broadband Engine that can be found in PlayStation 3 units. Aside from providing you with the most exciting gameplay experience, the chip is also responsible for bringing about medical breakthroughs.

Today, we learned that Mayo Clinic and IBM decided to collaborate yet again to help improve medical imaging technology. At the heart of this project is the unassuming chip. Know more after the jump!

PS3's Cell Broadband Engine helping in organ imaging advancements - Image 1Mayo Clinic and IBM announced today the creation of research facility Medical Imaging Informatics Innovation Center (MI3C). It is part of the collaboration that began in 2007 and will help advance medical imaging technologies to improve the quality of patient care.

Quite interestingly, the most advance equipments in the facility is being powered by blade technology and the SCE-trademarked Cell Broadband Engine, the same chip that powers the PlayStation 3. Projects that will be tackled by MI3C include:

  • Maximum-resolution organ imaging to provide physical (phenotype) information that parallels the current level of genetic detail available for the same tissue. This is designed to give physicians a much more complete impression of a patient’s condition.
  • Image-guided tumor ablation to pinpoint and maximize efficiency of heat transfer probes used to destroy cancer tumors. By guiding physicians, this innovation can help to improve accuracy and minimize side effects.
  • “Video swallow analysis” to see and compare how stroke patients swallow in order to better determine the severity of their disability and help provide proper physical therapy as well as protection against choking.
  • Automated Change Detection and Analysis designed to allow physicians to compare a new image with a previous one, eliminate what has not changed and to better assess what change has occurred, helping to improve diagnostic speed and accuracy.

“The collaborative potential of the MI3C gives us the opportunity to develop computationally intensive solutions for diagnostic problems we see every day, but that we at Mayo could not attempt to resolve on our own,” said Mayo’s Radiology Informatics Lab head Bradley Erickson.

MI3C will be housed in the Mayo Clinic campus in Rochester, Minnesota. Once the project took off from the ground, third parties will also be invited to collaborate with the two.

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