Central repository for digital pathology
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Start Date
End Date
IMI2 - Call 18
Grant agreement number

Type of Action: 
RIA (Research and Innovation Action)

IMI Funding
32 319 825
EFPIA in kind
37 762 082
Total Cost
70 081 907


Many diseases are still diagnosed, monitored and studied in part on the basis of biological samples that have been mounted on a glass slide and studied under a microscope. Today, that analysis is still carried out by a human pathologist, but what if the slides could be scanned and analysed using artificial intelligence (AI)? And what if they could be placed in a repository and made available to the scientific community? These are the questions the BIGPICTURE project hopes to answer.

The project aims to create a repository of digital copies of around 3 million slides covering a range of disease areas. This repository will then be used to develop artificial intelligence tools that could aid in the analysis of slides.

To achieve its goal, the project will first create the infrastructure needed to store, share and process millions of (often heavy) image files. Secondly, they will address legal and ethical issues to ensure patient privacy and data confidentiality issues are fully respected.

In total, the project plans to populate the repository with 3 million digital slides from humans as well as laboratory animals. along with all the information associated with them. These will provide the project with the data needed to develop AI pathology tools. Finally, the project aims to develop functionalities to facilitate the use of the database as well as the processing of images for diagnostic and research purposes.

In the long term, the project will develop sustainability plans to maintain and continue to develop the platform beyond the end of the IMI project.

Participants Show participants on map

EFPIA companies
  • Bayer Aktiengesellschaft, Leverkusen, Germany
  • Boehringer Ingelheim Internationalgmbh, Ingelheim, Germany
  • F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Institut De Recherches Internationales Servier Iris, Suresnes, France
  • Janssen Pharmaceutica Nv, Beerse, Belgium
  • Novartis Pharma AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Novo Nordisk A/S, Bagsvaerd, Denmark
  • Pfizer Limited, Sandwich, Kent , United Kingdom
  • Sanofi-Aventis Recherche & Developpement, Chilly Mazarin, France
  • UCB Biopharma, Brussels, Belgium
Universities, research organisations, public bodies, non-profit groups
  • Azienda Ospedaliera Per L Emergenza Cannizzaro, Catania, Italy
  • Biobanks And Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure Consortium (Bbmri-Eric), Graz, Austria
  • Digital Pathology Association Inc, Carmel, United States
  • European Society Of Pathology, Brussels, Belgium
  • Fraunhofer Gesellschaft Zur Forderung Der Angewandten Forschung Ev, München, Germany
  • Haute Ecole Specialisee De Suisse Occidentale, Delemont, Switzerland
  • Hus-Yhtyma, Helsinki, Finland
  • Institut Pasteur, Paris, France
  • Linkopings Universitet, Linkoping, Sweden
  • Medizinische Universitaet Wien, Vienna, Austria
  • Medizinische Universitat Graz, Graz, Austria
  • Philipps Universitaet Marburg, Marburg, Germany
  • Region Ostergotland, Linkoping, Sweden
  • Semmelweis Egyetem, Budapest, Hungary
  • Stichting Het Nederlands Kanker Instituut-Antoni Van Leeuwenhoek Ziekenhuis, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Stichting Radboud Universitair Medisch Centrum, Nijmegen, Netherlands
  • Technische Universitaet Muenchen, Muenchen, Germany
  • Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Eindhoven, Netherlands
  • The European Institute For Innovation Through Health Data, Gent, Belgium
  • The Leeds Teaching Hospitals National Health Service Trust, Leeds, United Kingdom
  • The University Of Warwick, Coventry, United Kingdom
  • Universitair Medisch Centrum Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • Universite De Liege, Liège, Belgium
  • Uppsala Universitet, Uppsala, Sweden
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and mid-sized companies (<€500 m turnover)
  • Csc-Tieteen Tietotekniikan Keskus Oy, Espoo, Finland
  • Cytomine Corporation SA, Liege, Belgium
  • Deciphex Limited, Mornington Meath, Ireland
  • Din Deutsches Institut Fuer Normung Ev, Berlin, Germany
  • Gbg Forschungs GMBH, Neu-Isenburg, Germany
  • Owkin France, Paris, France
  • Phit BV, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • Sectra AB, Linköping, Sweden
  • Stichting Lygature, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • Time.Lex, Brussel, Belgium
  • Ttopstart BV, Bilthoven, Netherlands
Third parties
  • Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
  • Umea Universitet, Umea, Sweden
  • Universita' Degli Studi Di Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy
  • University of Turku, Turku, Finland
Project coordinator
Jeroen Van Der Laak
Stichting Radboud Universitair Medisch Centrum