Top 10 AI in Healthcare Start-Ups in the UK

Blog published by CW (Cambridge Wireless), under Artificial Intelligence / Machine learning, Healthcare Applications

The UK Government’s Industrial Strategy lists both artificial intelligence and ageing society as two of the grand challenges which will transform our future. The latest developments in hardware and software have made artificial intelligence accessible to all industries and its rollout is increasing productivity and enabling new use cases across the board. It is no surprise that one of its most impactful application areas is in healthcare, a service that due to the ageing population is becoming overburdened and is begging for increased efficiencies.

Advanced data processing, image recognition and natural speech systems are being applied by innovative start-ups across a diverse range of health and social care services, from cancer diagnostics to genomics and mental health. With support from Government and industry, UK-based start-ups can have access to a robust library of anonymised patient data which accelerates the development of effective solutions.

So what start-ups are making waves in the health and social are sector using artificial intelligence and machine learning? CW has identified a number of UK-based companies developing solutions across a range of healthcare areas.

Interested in this subject? Consider registering for one of our upcoming related events, “Increasing the speed and diversity of invention in AI” on 4 December or “AI & Robotics in Neurocritical Care & Neurosurgery” on 20 April.


Cambridge-based Congenica are a global leader in genomic medicine. Their AI-based software analyses and interprets complex genome, exome and gene panel data, turning it into actionable information.  By increasing confidence in diagnoses, they enable healthcare professionals to make important clinical decisions and offer effective genomic medicine services that transform patients’ lives. They are the exclusive clinical decision support platform provider for the UK NHS Genomic Medicine Service.


BIOS has developed an amazing interface between the human nervous system and machines combining both hardware and software. In May 2019 it announced that it was able to automatically extract the neural signals regulating physiological biomarkers using their neural interface. They believe that this discovery offers a new way of investigating conditions and will open the door for a new generation of AI-based neural healthcare treatments.

Kheiron Medical Technologies

Kheiron MedTech is a rapidly growing company and the first to receive a CE Mark in deep learning and radiology.  They use deep learning technology to detect breast cancer sooner. Their solution uses image recognition combined with insight from radiologists to detect malignancies in mammograms. By having a machine as one of the “double readers”, it enables healthcare providers to still deliver state-of-the-art services but at reduced costs. Their technology is now being triealled in the United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust and Nottingham University Hospitals Trust.

Cambridge Cancer Genomics

Genomics is an emerging field of medicine that offers a lot of potential; however, the sheer volume of data that needs to be analysed per patient makes it only really possible using artificial intelligence techniques. CCG carry out research at the cutting edge of machine learning and cancer genomics to increase the amount of data available to oncologists. The more data oncologists have, the smarter the decisions they can make about which drug to use in which circumstance. Their approach differs to Congenica in that they focus solely on cancer rather than the full range of diseases. In May 2019 they announced a partnership with Genomics England, the Department of Health and Social Care spin-out, to collaboratively research a “sequencing panel” designed to cost-effectively profile a tumour mutational burden, and therefore response to immunotherapy, using a blood sample.


Artificial intelligence can also be applied to social care. The threat to young people of self-harm imagery and content online has been very much debated in the media recently. There are 1.35M searches on YouTube for self-harm videos from English speakers each year.  CAM A.I. is a recent winner of the MedTech Boost competition and is quite simple: a chatbot which engages internet users when they encounter content related to self-harm and attempts to draw the user away and offer support based on recognised cognitive behavioural therapy techniques.

Hear Angel

The inventor of Hear Angel addresses another rising problem: that of hearing damage caused by increased use of headphones. The app is calibrated with your headphones and tracks how much you are listening to, at what volumes and the “density” of the sound. It notifies you when you are at risk of a noise “overdose” and provides recommendations for protecting your hearing.


This team, HQ’d in Cardiff, utilises artificial intelligence for the clinical diagnosis of kidney disease. The technology draws on a range of data sources including health records, blood biomarkers and other genomic information.  Their partnership with the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (the medical school of the Mount Sinai Health System) is set to lead to product development and commercialisation by 2019.  It is estimated that about 10% of men and 12% of women are likely to be affected by kidney disease in their lifetime; timely diagnostics and targeted clinical care will make a big difference to patient outcomes.


With a view to relieving the stressed primary health services in the UK while still maintaining the highest levels of patient safety and care, Your.MD is a “pre-primary” care service which uses a chatbot to drill down into users’ symptoms and other factors and provide personalised information and guidance on appropriate next steps for care. With about 3M users, it is vouched for by the UK Government as being the world’s first AI health guide that provides immediate, trustworthy healthcare advice.


The protein engineering platform from the team at London-based LabGenius integrates machine learning, synthetic biology and robotics to explore the protein fitness landscape and improve drug properties. It is evolving a historically artisanal process based on experimental design by humans into a thorough, rapid, computer-led process. The solution reduces the challenge of creating high potency drugs with protease stability or extensive tissue penetration. Their first commercial partnership is with Tillots Pharma AG, exploring new drugs for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.

Granta Innovation

The team at Granta Innovation have a wealth of expertise in deploying artificial intelligence in healthcare applications. While they also now operate as a consultancy, the team is best known for their work in revolutionising prostate cancer diagnosis using artificial intelligence. Their solution combined machine and human expertise to increase the accuracy of mpMRI image analysis – a technique known to offer better sensitivity and selectivity than a TRUS biopsy.

Interested in this subject? Consider registering for one of our upcoming related events, “Increasing the speed and diversity of invention in AI” on 4 December or “AI & Robotics in Neurocritical Care & Neurosurgery” on 20 April.

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