Femtonics' software development wins an innovation award

Tuesday, 16 April, 2024
Tags: News

We are a neuroscience research institute, and we all agree that there is no innovation without basic research. But that doesn't mean we don't have people who contribute to making this basic research even more effective through instrument and software development. Take Femtonics, for example!


An even shorter summary of the founding story on the Femtonics website is that Balázs Rózsa and Gergely Katona needed a two-photon microscope that could scan in 3D, which did not exist before, so they built it with the help of some colleagues. 

Several brain researchers were interested in the development as potential customers, so in 2005 they founded Femtonics Research and Development Ltd. This was the first such venture to be launched from KOKI, and its exceptional success is sure to encourage other researchers to set up their businesses, given an idea with significant commercial potential and the right background. 

But as glorious as the past may be, it is not long to live on it, so let's now turn to why Femtonics received its third innovation award on 26 March 2024 in the Upper House of Parliament. The first one was in 2019 in the category "From basic research to market" for the Femto3D ATLAS laser scanning 3D microscope, whose award-winning version with image stabilization enhancements has been used by major institutions since 2022, such as Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) in Munich, America's most innovative children's hospital, Boston Children's Hospital, or MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and McGill University in Canada, among the world's top universities, and the famous research group at Columbia University in New York, led by Prof. Dr. Attila Losonczy, will have purchased its third Atlas microscope in 2023. 

3D acoustic-optical microscope technology has opened up a potentially new perspective in brain research because diagnostic methods such as computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) do not allow cellular imaging. This is essential for a better understanding of our thoughts, memory, and emotions, but also for studying the mechanisms of diseases of the central nervous system. Nowadays, the FEMTO3D Atlas offers the best solution for functional, cellular (intracellular) imaging of brain function. "However, in in vivo experiments, visceral movements (heartbeat, breathing) and voluntary movements can cause displacements of up to tens of micrometers, significantly larger than the structures to be measured (cell bodies and cell extensions, dendrites, dendritic spines). The Femtonics FocusPinner - 3D real-time image stabilization software allows in-vivo experiments to precisely measure the activity of neuronal cell extensions and neuronal networks by compensating for displacements during behavior, learning, and running. The method has also been successfully used to develop cell-based therapies for epilepsy and depression, among others, using animal models," said Prof. Dr. Balázs Rózsa, Managing Director of the company.

"The prize sends the message of the importance of organizing a team of high-tech specialists who can produce high-impact inventions and products in the face of strong international competition. It is crucial to strengthen the community of people who believe in domestic intellectual capital, as this will help us to motivate more and more people to bring their innovative ideas to life here". 

<< Back