Anumana partners with Novartis to develop AI cardiovascular disease detection tools


Anumana, a joint venture between EHR data company nference and the Mayo Clinic, announced last week it had entered a strategic partnership with pharma giant Novartis to develop artificial intelligence tools to detect cardiovascular diseases.

The collaboration will focus on deploying AI algorithms that analyze ECGs to find left ventricular dysfunction, which can lead to heart failure, and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, which can cause heart attack and stroke. 

The companies are pitching the partnership as a way to detect potentially deadly heart conditions and intervene before serious complications occur. 

“Many heart diseases develop for years before signs and symptoms appear, but the first event may be life threatening,” Dr. Paul Friedman, chair of Anumana’s Mayo Clinic board of advisors, said in a statement.

“AI enables us to uncover hidden signals our bodies transmit to detect otherwise occult heart diseases, potentially years before symptoms appear. This collaboration has the potential to transform the use of a ubiquitous inexpensive test, the ECG, with the aim of democratizing disease detection and helping medical care teams to proactively manage heart disease ahead of time, and prevent some clinical events from ever happening.”


Mayo Clinic partnered with smart stethoscope company Eko to develop an algorithm to identify low ejection fraction, a sign of heart failure, which received FDA Breakthrough Device Designation in late 2019. The tool also received Emergency Use Authorization to help clinicians spot complications associated with COVID-19 in 2020. 

Anumana was formed last year with the goal of using nference’s AI capabilities and Mayo’s medical data to build digital sensor diagnostics, starting with detection of heart disease. In May, the company announced it had received Breakthrough Device Designation for an algorithm designed for early detection of pulmonary hypertension.


“Cardiovascular disease is a widespread and multifactorial disease and, in order to mitigate its impact, we must look beyond therapeutic innovation and reimagine how we approach cardiovascular care,” Victor Bulto, president of Novartis Innovative Medicines US, said in a statement.

“Novartis is proud to collaborate with Anumana on innovative and data-driven solutions to better predict the risk of life-threatening heart disease, further driving forward our commitment to improving patient experiences and population health outcomes in this patient population.”


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