Nano-x will present its digital X-ray platform to the medical community for the first time at the annual conference of the North American Association of Radiologists (RSNA), which will be held in Chicago from November 29 to December 5. RSNA is one of the most important conferences in the world of radiology. The company announced that during the conference it will exhibit its technology and perform a live demonstration of two-dimensional and three-dimensional scans, and also allow time for professional Q&A with the audience.
The exhibition, which will be broadcast live on the Internet, will be hosted by the company’s founder and CEO, Ran Polyakin. The company’s share jumped more than 50% last week on the heels of the announcement, which garnered wide anticipation in the medical community and capital market as Nanox claims its technology could distrupt the imaging systems market.
Nanox has developed a Digital Computed Tomography technology based on the production of X-rays using a MEMS instead of an incandescent lamp. The company’s estimates its technology allows for the production of CT systems at a cost of $10,000 each, instead of approximately $3 million – the current average price of CT scanners. CT scanners perform multiple X-rays from different angles. A computer program is used to fuse all these images into a single three-dimensional file that allows the exploration of the body and its organs.
The company markets the system through collaborations with governments, hospitals and healthcare chains. The company has signed distribution agreements in 13 countries in the past year. It intends to offer the use of systems in a Pay-per-Scan model, thereby reducing the costs of equipping scanners. Nanox was listed on the NASDAQ in late August and sparked much attention in the stock market.
Disagreements among analysts
The conference will also be an opportunity for Nanox to refute the serious allegations made against it by research firm Citron in a report released last month, entitled “Nanox – a complete farce on the market.” The Citron report raises a number of allegations. First, the authors of the report claim that to date the company has not presented any examples of real scans performed using its X-ray machine, with comparison to existing X-ray machines.
Nanox also reported that since its inception it has invested about $ 7.5 million in R&D, and Citron claims it is a miniscule amount in relation to the huge budgets spent by the imaging systems manufacturers such as GE and Siemens, especially in light of the pretense to revolutionizing the field. For example, in 2019, GE invested about $ 1 billion in R&D in its imaging segment. Citron also draws attention to the fact that Nanox has submitted an application to the FDA using the 510k form, an expedited approval procedure that does not involve conducting clinical trials but is based on a statement that the device “substantially resembles” an existing device already approved by the FDA.
On the other hand, the investment firm Oppenheimer Israel, which began surveying the company last month, actually expressed optimism about the company’s future. Oppenheimer noted that Nanox’s “cold” X-ray systems could lead to a reduction in scan costs to $ 40 per scan, compared to $ 300 per scan in traditional systems, allowing Nanox to distribute machines to smaller clinics, thus increasing access for diagnostic services. Oppenheimer estimates that Nanox revenue in 2022 will total $ 115 million and in 2023 will increase to $ 171 million.
However, Oppenheimer Israel held a neutral recommendation for the time being, since the company still has to prove its execution capabilities, i.e its ability to produce the system on a large scale and deliver the orders to customers. “Although this opportunity is exciting, it has not yet been validated in real world settings. The company must demonstrate consistent production” it said. In the Oppenheimer report.