Bio-imaging refers to tools and technologies used to create structural or functional images of living objects or systems. Medical imaging in bio-imaging involves use of techniques and processes to create images of the anatomical areas and tissues of the human body to the molecular level. This helps in diagnosis and examination of disease and also helps to establish database of normal anatomy and physiology for future study. On the other hand, molecular biology in bio-imaging is related to the spatial and temporal arrangement of biological macromolecules. Bio-imaging incorporates radiology which involves various imaging technologies of X-ray radiography, medical ultrasonography or ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging, elastography, endoscopy, thermography, tactile imaging, medical photography and nuclear medicine functional imaging techniques such as positron emission tomography. Medical imaging is considered as a set of techniques that produce images of internal structures of the body non-invasively. Bio-imaging aims to improve human health with the use of imaging techniques to advance diagnosis, prevention and treatment of human diseases.
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The global bio-imaging technologies market has been segmented based on the type of technologies and geography. Technologies segment include medical bio-imaging and molecular bio-imaging. These imaging technologies have been further classified as nano-bioimaging, radiological, optical, magnetic resonance, ultrasound imaging, optical coherence tomography and others. Geographically, the market has been segmented into four major regions, namely North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific and Rest of the World. North America, followed by Europe dominate the global bio-imaging technologies market due to large number of firms involved in the development and distribution of bio-imaging systems. Rise in the number of new hospitals across the US and Europe as well as developing countries such as India and China is also expected to boost the growth of diagnostic imaging market. Technological advancements such as use of digital imaging are allowing wireless sharing of important information among multiple team members. Other advancements include hybrid imaging, portable technology, pill camera and systems design.
Medical imaging has become an important tool in clinical trial enabling rapid diagnosis with visualization and quantitative assessment. It also indicates progression of a therapy. Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging techniques have been routinely used neuroscience and oncology. Technological developments, potential opportunities in cardiology sector and radiation oncology, portable systems, increased adoption in non-hospital settings, and rising demand for ultrasound imaging are various factors which boost the growth of the global bio-imaging technologies market. Moreover, demand for women health imaging, bioinformatics industry and healthcare IT is further expected to propel the market growth. The number of radiological medical procedures is expected to increase considerably with better healthcare policies coming up and increased availability of medical equipment. Effective and of good quality imaging is important for further medical decision making and can reduce unnecessary procedures. Another strong factor driving the market is the introduction of Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS) and telemedicine, wherein bioimaging results from different technologies is shared across several countries and states which radically speeds up diagnosis and treatment. Additionally, advances in materials have led to the development of biological separation and purification, and magnetic resonance imaging techniques. Development of new sensors by scientists to explore biological functions and structures is letting bioimaging take new dimension in visualizing or analyzing the information in three and four dimensions. However inadequate technical infrastructure and declining levels of reimbursement may pose a challenge to the market growth.
Some of the key players contributing to the global bio-imaging technologies market include BioClinica, Inc., Bracco Imaging S.p.A, FONAR Corporation, Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals, Covidien Pharmaceuticals, Digirad Corporation, Esaote S.p.A, Hitachi Medical Corporation, Gamma Medica Inc., GE Healthcare, Positron Corporation, Philips Healthcare, SonoSite Inc., Siemens Healthcare, Shimadzu Corporation, and Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation.
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