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Evaluating cells at the metabolic level could revolutionize research into cell function in both health and disease. Traditional biomarkers tend to provide static, isolated information, e.g., on gene mutations, protein expression or epigenetic modifications. In contrast, the study of real-time metabolism can reveal information on the in vivo functionality of a cell. Cell-level real time metabolic flux analysis can promote versatile medical research in drug discovery, cancer research, stem cell therapy, embryology and more.


However, there is currently no reliable approach for real-time metabolic analysis at the cellular level. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometers are robust, safe, and widely used in metabolomic research, yet they lack the sensitivity required for resolving metabolic processes at the microscopic level.


HYPERCELL combines two groundbreaking technologies from two European scale-ups to transform benchtop NMR to a cell dynamic metabolic analysis tool, poised to unlock new possibilities in medical research.


​NVision's unique quantum-based platform makes NMR spectrometers sensitive to metabolites, thereby transforming them into powerful metabolic imagers. NVision applies quantum technology in a process called hyperpolarization, which enhances metabolite signals by over 10,000-fold, making them visible to the NMR. The metabolic agent produced by the polarizer enables the real-time visualization of both the original metabolite, as well as its conversion into downstream intracellular end products. Measuring these reactions with standard NMR devices allows for the generation of valuable metabolic insights into intracellular activity.


Annaida's proprietary sensor technology is uniquely designed to perform NMR at the micro scale, reducing the sensing volume by over 100 fold. It leverages custom-designed components for microscale sensing and combines them with a microstructure for simple handling and analysis of biological samples. The sensor technology is designed to be compatible with existing NMR spectrometers. Importantly, it also  provides a biocompatible environment during measurements, an essential feature for cellular applications. 


NVision's hyperpolarization process increases the signal of metabolites >10,000-fold, while Annaida’s proprietary micro-sensing technology enables detection on the 100 um scale (1nl), optimal for cellular level. Together, these technologies have the power to transform standard NMRs into sensitive tools for the metabolic analysis of cellular processes at micro-scale.



Vial_step 1.png

Prepare sample

for polarization process




Use NVision's hyperpolarizer to rapidly enhance the MR signal of the analytes in the sample



Analyze with standard NMR spectrometer utilizing Annaida's  micro sensor technology


HYPERCELL-enhanced NMR analysis holds the capacity to facilitate groundbreaking research in the life sciences, as well as the pharmaceutical sector. Potential future applications for cell-level metabolic analysis span academia, industry, and clinical settings, including the discovery of metabolic targets for cancer therapies, drug candidate screening, stem cell research, and advanced embryo screening in the assisted reproductive technology (ART) space.


Clinically, applying micro-scale NMR could significantly improve the overall success rate of in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures through non-invasive, non-disruptive embryo screening prior to implantation.


The collaboration between NVision Imaging Technologies  and Annaida Technologies is organized under the HYPERCELL project, a 2.5 year project funded by the European Innovation Council as part of the EIC Transition program.  


The objective of the HYPERCELL project is to offer the first solution for non-invasive, cell-level detection of metabolism in a standard benchtop NMR spectrometer system. This technology has the potential to open new horizons in cellular metabolic analysis, due to its scalability, versatility and ability to deliver quantifiable, direct measurements at an unprecedented micro scale.


Project type: EIC Transition

Start date: 1 January 2024
End date: 30 June 2026


Financing: European Innovation Council (EIC)

Grant amount: €4 MM

Project coordination: NVision Imaging Technologies GmbH

Ulm, Germany



The overall objective of HYPERCELL is to demonstrate that real-time quantitative analysis of metabolic flux in live cells is feasible, and to validate the performance of this combined technology in life science research applications and assisted reproduction / IVF.



NVision Imaging Technologies is at the forefront of PHIP-based hyperpolarized NMR, proven by a strong publication track record and a strong hyperpolarization IP portfolio. The company is deeply integrated into the NMR ecosystem in Europe, with a history of interdisciplinary collaboration within academia and industry.  NVision is backed by leading deep-tech VC funds from the US and Europe and currently employs more than 40 physicists, engineers, and material scientists, including professionals with more than 10 years of experience in NMR research, technology development, and project management.


Annaida Technologies SA is a high-tech spin-off of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), founded in 2018. The company has developed Embryospin, a breakthrough technology that for the first time allows performing nuclear magnetic resonance at microscopic scale (μNMR), thus bringing the benefits of this powerful non-invasive technique to the cellular level. Annaida’s team has a strong background in physics, engineering, biochemistry, clinical/regulatory affairs, medtech and finance. Learn more at

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