Automatic reading and interpretation of medical tests for celiac disease


Based at the BioArk in Monthey, Augurix SA develops and markets “Lateral Flow” diagnostic tests (similar to a pregnancy test). One of their flagship products, “SimtomaX”, is a rapid immuno-chromatographic diagnostic test that detects celiac disease from a drop of blood taken from the fingertip. The test is qualitative and is interpreted visually. It also allows detection in patients with selective IgA (immunoglobulin A) deficiency.

This research project focused on the development of a working prototype of an automatic reader and decoder of the SimtomaX (3-band) diagnostic tests on a Smartphone. The automation of the diagnosis through a mobile application will facilitate and make the use of these tests more reliable. A visual recognition algorithm (Computer Vision) allows the localisation and interpretation of the test. Coupled with the functionalities offered by the use of a Smartphone, the application could, in the future, provide many additional services to the user (advice, direct transmission of results, identification and geolocation of users, etc.). The role of the Icare Research Institute has been to develop a first demonstration prototype on an iPhone allowing the location and interpretation of results for this test. This achievement contributes to the promotion of Lateral Flow diagnostic tests and to strengthening the attractiveness of this technology.