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Company Information

IntellipPalp Dx company background

Established in 2020, IntelliPalp Dx is a spinout company from Heriot-Watt and Edinburgh Universities with NHS Lothian. The company has been established to develop the commercial opportunities arising from a research collaboration between Professor Bob Reuben (HWU) and Professor Alan McNeill (NHS Lothian/University of Edinburgh) that has spanned two decades. The research has provided a method for mechanical palpation of human tissue that provides information about the morphology of that tissue, specifically whether cancer is present or not (maybe included some references/links to open access publications). The work has focused on the diagnosis of prostate cancer and has provided the basis for the ProstaPalp™ device that will soon enter a validation study to confirm its accuracy as a diagnostic tool for prostate cancer.

IntelliPalp Dx specialises in instrumented palpitation and the diagnosis and management of prostate cancer. Its founders are Professor Alan McNeill, Consultant Urological Surgeon; Mr Daniel Good, Consultant Urological Surgeon; Professor Bob Reuben, Professor of Materials Engineering at Heriot-Watt University; Ms Femi Johnson, Engineer; Professor David Sigsworth FRSE; Mr Philip Rainey, Interim CEO. The company’s first product is ProstaPalp, a device that offers an objective test for improved prostate cancer diagnosis and management. 

Current stage of development

We are partnering with CENSIS on a Collaborative Research Project being undertaken at Heriot Watt University by a team led by Dr Yuhang Chen that focuses on developing the design and manufacture of the probe along with the signal processing algorithm to deliver more user-friendly, reproducible and reliable results. This work will also lay the foundation for integrating “mechanical intelligence” into our algorithms so that future versions of our products can be equipped with an element of machine learning. The sensor development will help us to manufacture enough probes to undertake a further clinical evaluation led by Mr Jonathan Aning and the Urology team at the University of Bristol. Thereafter, we believe commercial sales of the device for use in clinical practice will begin.

Development of the ProstaPalp™ device represents CENSIS’s 200th collaborative research project since the innovation centre’s inception in 2013. With a project portfolio now valued at £37.5m, the centre has supported industry and public sector organisations in activities to innovate through the development and use of sensor and imaging systems and Internet of Things technologies.



CENSIS is the centre of excellence for sensing and imaging systems (SIS) and Internet of Things (IoT) technologies. We help organisations explore innovation and overcome technology barriers to achieve business transformation. As one of Scotland’s innovation centres, our focus is not only creating sustainable economic value in the Scottish economy, but also generating social benefit. To do this, our industry-experienced engineering and project management teams work directly with companies or in collaborative teams with specialist university research experts. Working with us allows organisations to implement quality, efficiency and performance improvements and fast -track the development of new products and services for global markets.

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