Pioneer in Quantitative Elastography

Echosens is the first company which has developed and sold a non-invasive medical device providing key measurements of the liver stiffness to assess chronic liver diseases

Our VCTE technology, which is the core technology in our range of FibroScan devices, enables our FibroScan devices to generate precise quantitative measurements of key liver parameters, including stiffness and, in certain models, ultrasound attenuation (which we refer to as CAP). These two parameters highly correlate to liver fibrosis and liver steatosis, respectively, which are key markers of the progression of chronic liver diseases.

Our research and development department has a proven track record of 14 years of research and innovation in the field of chronic liver disease assessment and monitoring.

Our research and development teams developed the FibroScan device and all of its algorithms and software. Our teams have extended their expertise to blood biomarker analysis and biostatistics in developing and improving our FibroMeter blood test analysing tools.

 

Technology

 

Echosens currently holds
more than 17 patent families,
focusing mainly on its key technology: VCTE™.

Technologies

FibroScan

Our FibroScan devices are able to quantify liver stiffness, which is a physical parameter that measures a liver’s resistance to deformation. Liver stiffness highly correlates to liver fibrosis, which is the excessive accumulation of scar tissue in a liver and a key marker of chronic liver diseases and liver health condition. The measurement of liver stiffness can, therefore, be used to determine the presence and stage of liver fibrosis.

 

Awards
Echosens R&D regularly
receives prestigious awards for
its innovations

VCTE: measuring the speed of propagation of a shear wave in the liver

Also called “TE” for Transient Elastography, VCTE technology is the core technology which is used in the FibroScan devices. It enables these FibroScan devices to generate quantitative measurements of key liver parameters, such as stiffness and, when the CAP option is used, ultrasound attenuation. These two parameters highly correlate to liver fibrosis and liver steatosis, respectively, which are key markers of the existence and progression of chronic liver diseases.
Our FibroScan devices measure liver stiffness in three steps:

  • a vibrator, inside the probe of our device, generates shear waves aimed at a patient’s liver
  • an ultrasound transducer located at the tip of the probe, sends and receives ultrasound waves to follow the shear wave propagation through the patient’s liver
  • algorithms developed by us analyse the recorded ultrasound signals, compute the speed of the shear waves and derive a quantification of stiffness of the patient’s liver in question

 

Pioneer

 

FibroScan the first medical
device dedicated to the
measurement of Liver Stiffness

CAP - Controlled Attenuation Parameter

As an option offered on certain of our FibroScan devices, CAP is a parameter that measures the attenuation, or reduction in amplitude, of ultrasound waves travelling through a liver. Since CAP correlates well to liver steatosis, CAP can be used to determine the presence and stage of liver steatosis, which is the excess accumulation of fat in a liver and a key marker induced by “fatty liver diseases”.

 

FibroMeter

FibroMeter algorithms compute and interpret up to 10 biomarkers to assess the stage of liver fibrosis. These biomarkers are uploaded on our servers by the medical laboratory in charge of collecting and analysing the blood samples. The software then combines and processes the biomarker values to provide a fibrosis score and a fibrosis classification. FibroMeter may be used with patients with viral hepatitis, metabolic steatosis, and alcoholic liver diseases. One of the versions of this technology that we have developed combines blood parameters derived from FibroMeter and FibroScan results.

 

Technology

 

FibroMeter provides a complete
range of blood tests to quantify
the presence of fibrosis in the liver.

FibroView

FibroView is a software suite developed for physicians. Health information technologies are used as part of our FibroView software solutions to enable FibroScan end-users to optimise their clinical processes and enable full connectivity between our devices and hospital information systems. We use technologies widely adopted and used in the industry to allow maximum compatibilities. To this end, we have developed expertise and competency in software programming languages, in connectivity protocols, such as HL7 communication standards, which are used to interface with existing electronic medical records.

 

Genesis

The Echosens adventure started with the PhD thesis of Laurent Sandrin on transient elastography under the supervision of Pr. Mathias FINK. Together with talented electronics engineer Jean-Michel Hasquenoph they developed this disruptive technique at the Laboratoire Ondes et Acoustique, in the Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (ESPCI Paris Tech). Their research led notably to the development of the Vibration Controlled Transient Elastography (VCTE) method.

Echosens was founded in June 2001 with the intention of transforming this laboratory method into a product. A meeting with several physicians from the Institut Mutualiste Montsouris (IMM) encouraged the founders to try to adapt the technology to chronic liver diseases in order to assess hepatic fibrosis.

After 9 months of intense development, a first prototype is ready: the technology behind FibroScan® was born.