Digital twins are being applied to aircraft engines, cities and now humans – we take a look at two recent developments.
It has been a bit of a week for musings on ‘digital twins’ and their jump from R&D into cloud apps that everyone uses to track their personalised health biomarkers – both up and down.
Longevity.Technology: Consider a future where your health tracking correlates directly with your projected death date, which in turn correlates to your pension and healthcare provision, and you’ll get the picture of how AI, 5G, wearables and biomarkers will shape the future of Longevity.
It was in the middle of a very busy LSX World Congress that we met with Carlo Rivis, CEO of Computational Life, a digital avatar platform that’s currently engaged in cardiology research and development of medical devices in pre-clinical and clinical phases. What’s cool is that they can convert their virtual generic model into an exact replica of the patient by overlaying an MRI scan over their model. Once done, the digital twin possess all of the vascular features of the patients to then track blood flow and organ response.
“The Digital Avatar Platform is a highly innovative testing platform that integrates several components of the human body in a tightly integrated manner and represents the solution for MedTech companies that need to understand the effect of medical devices on the whole body,” Rivis told us. “It solves the uncertainties connected to animal testing and multiple parameter measurements at several locations. This integration allows us to verify several hypotheses and analyse scenarios which can be extremely difficult to test otherwise.”
The cloud-based platform allows the integration of the digital twin with a digital version of the target medical device that’s being tested. Subject to bandwidth and processing (thanks 5G), it won’t be a major leap for real-time tracking of individuals’ biomarkers and activity, or the performance of any devices or replacement body parts.
Rivis told us that the company is closing its Series A which, when combined with grants, with close at $5m.
Coincidentally, Dassault Systèmes, who built the first virtual twin of a Boeing 777, announced that they are releasing a virtual twin experience of the human body with their 3DEXPERIENCE platform – which brings together biosciences, material sciences and information sciences to enable stakeholders to project the data for an object into a complete living virtual model that can be fully configured and simulated. The company projects that “industry, researchers, physicians and even patients can visualise, test, understand and predict what cannot be seen – from the way drugs affect a disease to surgical outcomes – before a patient is treated.”
“Today, we’re capable of applying the knowledge and know-how we acquired in the non-organic world to the living world, extending our focus from things to life. The virtual twin experience of the human body will enable us to invent new ways of representing life by understanding and representing the invisible, and make a lasting contribution for the benefit of all” said Bernard Charlès, Vice Chairman and CEO of Dassault Systèmes.
We know of one app development company that’s pre-Series A in this domain and we expect to share an announcement on this soon. The social implications of digital twins, as well as the benefits to the development of Longevity solutions, will be significant.