Cytomine raises a million to support its virtual microscope

The Liège start-up wants to continue to extend the use of its platform allowing the sharing and use of digital biomedical photos.

Cytomine continues its development: the Liège start-up specializing in the sharing and analysis of large biomedical images has just wrapped up a fundraising of one million euros, in which the majority of historical investors participated.

A spin-off from ULiège, the small Walloon company has developed a device allowing the sharing of biomedical images and the implementation of image analysis algorithms. A kind of virtual microscope whose essential functions remain open-access. Biomedical images are in vitro biological samples – cells, tissues, organs, etc. – digitized obtained in particular from a biopsy.

Tumor detection

Used to teach histology and pathology in college, this device can also be used in biomedical research and diagnostic assistance in hospital for tumor detection and quantification or cell counting, object classification or landmark detection.



Cytomine’s software provides very fast access to high resolution images.

Cytomine’s software provides very fast access to high-resolution images, allowing users to annotate regions of interest and add semantic information. Users also have the ability to train and run artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms for semi-automated image analysis.

Several reference universities in Belgium, France and Switzerland have already adopted the platform, which allows sharing the same image remotely and avoids the use of dozens of different microscopes and samples. In research, the system is used by several academic centers, such as the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, the Health Data Hub and Arcagy-Gineco in France. “We continue to win prospects in Europe. We are not yet in the United States, but we are working on it”, explains CEO Jean Beka.



“Cytomine ultimately intends to position itself on hospital diagnostic solutions based on artificial intelligence”.

John Beka

Cytomine CEO

Fundraising should be used to develop the international presence of the start-up. Although it mainly targets education and research today, the company intends to eventually position itself “on hospital diagnostic solutions based on artificial intelligence. We are working on research and development on artificial intelligence with large university hospitals”, specifies Jean Beka.

The Cytomine platform was also chosen as a reference tool within the framework of a European project bringing together 46 partners and funded to the tune of 70 million. Called Bigpicture, this initiative, which brings together large pharmaceutical companies, universities and manufacturers, aims to develop artificial intelligence in biomedical pathology in Europe.

Initially created as a cooperative, Cytomine is still housed in the WSL incubator. She is supported by Gesval, the technology transfer and investment company of the University of LiègeCycat Invest, a group of independent investors, the Walloon Region (via Sowalfin) and the Liège investment Noshaq.

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Cytomine raises a million to support its virtual microscope


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