In early February 2022, Scopio Labs closed a $50 million Series C round. The Israeli-based startup CEO, Itai Hayut, said the amount would be invested in turning hematology into remote work. Scopio Labs was founded in 2015 after Hayut partnered with Erez Na’aman, and today, they are revolutionizing the healthcare industry, particularly hematology microscopy and diagnostics. Besides being at the helm of Scopio Labs, there is more to Hayut, as you shall find out from the facts detailed below.
1. He is a Problem Solver
Hayut revealed during an interview with Unite that he and his co-founder visited many hospitals and were surprised that there was yet to be a technological advancement to help in digital analysis. The two co-founders watched as medical practitioners counted cells manually, a very labor-intensive process. The hospitals also relied on traditional microscopes. As a result, the two innovators decided to buy a scanner to bring the practitioners to the digital age.
2. How Scopio Lab Was Born
Although Hayut and Na’aman were determined to make work easier for the practitioners, they were forced to think of another way to solve the problem. The two initially thought that all they needed was to buy a scanner and scan the slides, which would then be analyzed using Artificial intelligence (AI) tools. To their disbelief, they did not find a scanner; hence, Hayut and his partner had to create one. Thankfully, they had a background in physics and were knowledgeable in biology. Therefore, within no time, they built a scanner on which they could apply high-quality data and technological advancements to change how the diagnosis and disease detection had been done for years.
3. He Believes the Human Body is the Most Complex Physical Machine
Bill Gates once said that the human body is the most complex system ever created and that the more we learn about it, the more we are endeared to appreciate it. Hayut shared the same opinion about the human body and said it is the most amazing physical machine. It is, therefore, no wonder that nature fascinates him, and he was drawn more to biology.
4. He Attended The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Hayut studied Applied Physics at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a public university in Jerusalem, Israel. While he was there, he and Na’aman started thinking of what they could do to work together and leverage AI and IT to make an impact on the world. The university is highly regarded as one of the best institutions in the world and ranks #224 globally. It is a very selective university that admits students based on past academic grades and records and the entrance exam. As a result, the admission rate is 20-30%, meaning that Hayut was a brilliant student.
5. He Aims to Achieve His Goals
In 2021, Gila Tolub, a partner at McKinsey & Company, conducted an interview with Hayut published on LinkedIn. The CEO disclosed that he was planning on enabling remote diagnoses of abnormalities. Hayut said it was one of his priorities, and true to his word, the recent funding round amounting to $50 million will be used to facilitate remote hematology work. Since Scopio Labs already has Scopio100X, a scanner that zooms images up to 100 times magnification, the digital image can be sent anywhere. It will enable peripheral blood smears to be carried out remotely.
6. Why He Designed Scopio100X
According to Hi-Tech Glitz, Hayut proudly said that Scopio is the first company worldwide to break the trade-off between resolution and field of view. For a long time, labs have had to contend with the problem of magnification; usually the higher the magnification, the lesser the field of view, and the poorer the image resolution. With Scopio100X, Hayut solved this problem because even when images are magnified to 100 times, the entire slide can still be viewed, thereby meeting the requirements of a peripheral blood smear.
7. He is Living Up to the Expectations of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
On The Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Facebook page, the institution stated that its students apply the knowledge taught in the classroom to find innovative solutions. It further prided itself on providing students with hands-on experience and internships that paved the way for breakthroughs. Hayut has adhered to the university’s expectations by using his knowledge to provide creative solutions for the problems encountered in medical practice.
8. He Envisions AI Permeating All Healthcare Disciplines
For now, Hayut has focused his efforts on the field of blood and microscopy testing. Still, he knows that there lies so much potential in the healthcare industry for others to explore. According to the CEO, the future has a lot in store for all the healthcare disciplines. He explained that computation imaging technology and computer vision could scan and analyze images, thereby facilitating faster diagnosis and treatments. Furthermore, once accuracy and efficiency improve, healthcare professionals will be left with more time to spend with the patients.
9. He Has a Soft Spot for Patients
In everything that Hayut does, he always has patients at heart. He may not be a doctor; however, Hayut’s belief that the human body is the most complex machine allows him to understand the plight of patients when one part of the body is not functioning optimally. Therefore, even when he talked about his vision for AI in ten years, he said that he hoped to see less-invasive methods when detecting diseases introduced to avoid putting patients through unnecessary suffering. Hayut added that real-time diagnostics would also prevent missing parts of a patient’s story.
10. He is a Committed Family Man
Hayut confessed that when he co-founded Scopio Labs, he did almost everything by himself. He admitted to spreading himself thin as he was hands-on in all aspects of the company. Thankfully, he changed when his two daughters were born because he realized that he was missing out on seeing them grow. His desire to be involved in their lives helped him trust that others could also lead the company in the right direction.