Yole on Disposable Medical Sensor Revolution

Image Sensors World        Go to the original article...

Yole Development report "Disposable image sensors: a revolution for microscopy and next-generation sequencing" states the image sensor market for microscopy & NGS will show an impressive growth: +18% CAGR between 2018-2024 (in volume).

Microscopy & NGS markets are undergoing enormous technological changes”, announces Marjorie Villien, Technology & Market Analyst at Yole Développement (Yole).“These innovations are opening the way for new business opportunities, especially within the camera image sensors industry.”

Indeed, one of the most remarkable changes is the introduction of disposable image sensors within the cameras for microscopy & NGS. Cameras are key elements in the microscopy and NGS space.

The main trend in optical microscopy is to attain higher resolution, as well as faster acquisition and higher sensitivity for quicker and better diagnostics, and real time imaging of living organisms,” explains Marjorie Villien from Yole. “CCD is the main image sensor technology used today, but CMOS is gaining market share due to an increasing need for high-speed image acquisition.

However, this trend towards better imaging is counterbalanced by another trend – one that leans towards portability and use of microscopy at the point of care. These systems are sleeker and cheaper, and deliver microscopy results directly to the caregiver.

This is also the case for NGS. Two very different trends are discernable, one towards higher throughput with very expensive, bulky equipment; and another that is lower throughput, with cheaper equipment offering lower footprint and wide availability
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Illumina, the optical NGS market leader with more than 80% market share is a good example. The company has a diverse product portfolio of mid- to high-end systems, but recently launched a more affordable, lower-throughput system – the iSeq100. This follows the trend towards commoditization of NGS. The iSeq100 does not integrate optical systems in the instrument anymore, but uses a disposable image sensor directly inside the flow cell, which is a game-changer in the NGS market. Indeed, this makes the instrument much more affordable, enabling Illumina to place more systems and therefore sell more consumables, which they can make cheaper because of increased volumes.
This trend is also seen with BGI, Illumina’s Chinese competitor, which recently announced a benchtop, optics-free NGS instrument running CMOS chips.

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