Round 11: nCight, Inc-Converting Arthroscopic Surgical Images into a Data Union

Grant Proposal Template

Grant Proposal

Part 1 - Proposal Submission

Name of Project: nCight, Inc: Classification and Verification of Arthroscopic Surgery Images.

Proposal in one sentence: Creation of a data union web app and algorithm as a practical use case for unlocking arthroscopic surgery imaging data on the Ocean marketplace.

Description of the project and what problem is it solving: Independent physicians struggle with maintaining autonomy due to the negative reimbursement pressures from third party payors. For the first time in the history of the United States, the number of employed physicians outnumber independent physicians. Orthopedic surgeons have been able to withstand the consolidating pressures largely due to access to ancillary streams of revenue such as ambulatory surgery centers and owning PT and advanced imaging (e.g. MRI). Even with these additional streams of income the number of surgeons in private practice has declined by over 30% over the last 20 years. Independent physicians drive innovation and represent an important part of the healthcare system. It was independent surgeons that pioneered advances in pain management and anesthesia to make outpatient procedures safe and cost effective, saving the healthcare system 100’s of millions of dollars. There is therefore a public interest in keeping physicians independent. By focusing on this group of physicians with a strong entrepreneurial spirit and fierce desire to maintain autonomy we believe this represents an early adopter group. We aim to engage independent Orthopedic Surgeons into the data economy by leveraging the Ocean Protocol to turn data assets in the form of surgical images into tokenized assets that will be provided to medical device data consumers. The orthopedic medical device market is a $39.5 B industry. Limited access to surgeon use data makes market analysis and servicing of current products difficult. In comparison, the $2.6T pharmaceutical industry has access to granular data through companies like Iqvia ($48B) that assist marketing and decision making, there is no equivalent in the medical device space. This is where our opportunity lies to provide granular, unique data to a specific customer segment from data producers motivated to engage. nCight, Inc utilizing the Ocean protocol will establish a network of orthopedic surgeons and their patients to align incentives of patients, physicians and data consumers creating a marketplace for data assets. nCight, Inc will function as a trusted party through relationships within the orthopedic surgery world to bootstrap the network. We will be creating a business to business marketplace.The initial approach will be to consolidate one side of this market by building our physician network of data assets. Care will be taken to not build something with no buyers so we will also conduct experiments testing our value hypothesis that medical device companies will engage with nCight, Inc if we build a regional network of physicians that demonstrate our ability to scale and engage with a segment of physicians. nCight, Inc will serve as a service intermediary connecting the crypto immature physician network to crypto immature medical device companies. We anticipate as adoption and comfort increases, more participants will manage these data relationships internally.

Proposal Goals

  1. Develop a website and web app that shows capabilities of data union for physician contributors and labelers of arthroscopic surgical images.

We will create a website that has basic information related to functionality and overview of arthroscopic image data union. We will outline the steps needed to take sign up and participate in the data union, how to upload and label images, create data tokens and place onto the Ocean Marketplace. The web app will give domain experts the ability to label images and receive rewards for participation.

  1. Use uploaded dataset, subject matter experts and data scientists to create an algorithm that determines whether the selected image falls within the knee or shoulder category.

We will upload a small number of surgical images and demonstrate the capabilities of a basic algorithm to determine whether the image should be classified into a knee or shoulder category. Working with data scientists from Algovera we will create an MVP that provides a basic prototype for image analysis for this type of imaging data. With limited funding level available to first time funders we anticipate this portion of the project will be completed with future rounds

Grant Deliverables:

  • ロ Grant Deliverable 1: Website and Web app for demonstration purposes of arthroscopic image data union

Which category best describes your project?

  • Build applications or integrations to Ocean

Which Fundamental Metric best describes your project?

Datatoken Contracts

What is the final product?: Website and web app for data union, Algorithm for classifying images.

How does this project drive value to the “fundamental metric” (listed above) and the overall Ocean ecosystem? What is the expected ROI?

With a total addressable market of 1.4 million arthroscopic cases performed in the United States every year capturing 5% of those cases should result in 70,000 cases. We believe this is ultimately an obtainable goal considering our target group of independent orthopedic surgeons represents nearly 60% of the total orthopedic surgeon pool. We have already piloted and deployed on the ocean marketplace a sample dataset contract.

Using data from this pilot contract, we estimate that each arthroscopic case is worth $5.49 (on 10/27/21). Based on the current market value of an arthroscopic case we estimate the total addressable market to be $384,300 ($5.49 x 70,000) if we can consolidate 5% of the arthroscopic images in the orthopedic market. Accounting for the required 30% provider shares which incentive data producer participation we estimate a Total BANG of $269,010. “While this level of return is not expected to be obtained in phase 1, we believe with a viral growth engine that functions with 2 referrals per physician we can reach this level within 12 months so our Average Monthly BANG is 22,418. With our access to orthopedic surgeons through our professional network we believe our chance of success is 70%.

Funding Requested: $3000 (Buck)

ROI: $22.4K/3K = 7.5 *70%= 5.2

Proposal Wallet Address:0x0cEC1Dbc5Db276dE35808bf717a4491082fDb8d8

Have you previously received an OceanDAO Grant (N)?

Team Website (if applicable): N/A

Twitter Handle (if applicable):N/A

Discord Handle (if applicable): @cryptoaware

Project lead Contact Email:

Country of Residence: United States

Part 2 - Team

Core Team

Alonzo Sexton MD

Michael Dural

  • Role: Chief Digital Marketing, Operations
  • Relevant Credentials:
  • Background/Experience:
    • Co-founder, COO blacQube
    • Account Executive, Razorfish
    • Alliance Manager, Interwoven
    • Manager, Accenture
  • Key Clients
    • Mercedes-AMG
    • Cigarette Racing Team
    • FedEx
    • Coca-Cola
    • IWC

Darrell Philpot

  • Role: Project Manager
  • Relevant Credentials:
  • Background/Experience:
    • SVP, Alpha Impact Rx
    • Predictive Modeling
    • Market Research
    • Forecasting
    • Survey Sampling
    • Promotion Modeling

David Livingston

  • Role: Head of Sales, Strategic Partnerships
  • Relevant Credentials:
  • Background/Experience:
    • Senior Vice President, IMG
    • Director National Corporate Sponsorships, Spectra
    • Director of Partnerships, Cleveland Cavaliers
    • Brand Manager, Procter & Gamble


John Butler

John Sibley Butler holds the J. Marion West Chair for Constructive Capitalism in the Graduate School of Business (Department of Management) at the University of Texas - Austin. He is a professor in the Management Department and holds a joint appointment in Organizational Behavior in the College of Liberal Arts, where he holds the Darrell K. Royal Regents Professorship in Ethics and American Society (Sociology). His research is in the areas of Organizational Behavior and Entrepreneurship/New Ventures. His research appears in professional journals and books. He is the Sam Barshop Fellow at The IC2 Institute, an organization dedicated to the creation of new ventures throughout the world.

Jeff Spence

Jeff Spence has a wealth of experience in the venture, private equity and startup world. He has served roles as both a managing and operating director in a multitude of companies including Source capital and Caedan. He is on the board of directors of Displayit, and PTI Security Systems. He brings operating experience and over 20 years of expertise from the startup world.

Russell Smith

Founder of RTS Associates, Russell has been CEO for over 20 years. The company is one of the leading telecom suppliers in the Southeast. He is an advisor for several startup companies including Verady, a blockchain tax solution firm. Russell is a member of the Young Presidents Organization, Board of Trustees for Leadership Georgia and a member of the Northeast Georgia Health System Foundation Board of Trustees.

Jeb Stewart

Jeb Stewart is an entrepreneur and investor. He was founder and chairman of SciHealth Holdings, Inc, a healthcare decision support software and consulting solutions company. He has also been involved in starting and/or building businesses in telecommunications, computer hardware and software, construction, and manufacturing. Jeb has served in leadership positions or governing boards of more than three dozen business and civic organizations. He has directly invested in more than six dozen startup- and early stage- businesses and multiple venture capital funds, serving as an active advisor to many of them.

Mary Harris

Mary is the President of BioTechnical Communications, Inc. She has 34 years of expertise in business development, corporate strategy, corporate finance and government grants and contracting. She has a PhD in molecular genetics from Cornell University.

Part 3 - Proposal Details

Project Deliverables - Category:

  • Website that details the function of data union

  • Webapp that demonstrates the capabilities of creation of datasets derived from the arthroscopic images.

  • Arthroscopic Image Datasets will be made available on Ocean Marketplace on testnet for demonstration purposes

  • Plan for scaling, focused on viral growth engine

Project Deliverables - Roadmap

  • Week 1-2: Website design meeting provide wireframe and copy for site
  • Week 2-3: Integrate web app from existing infrastructure. Download images for integration.
  • Week 4: Complete website and demonstrate functionality to community.
  • Please include the team’s future plans and intentions.
    • Develop algorithm to determine whether image is a knee or a shoulder
    • Create image datasets on Ocean marketplace
    • Data Bounty for community verifiers after domain expert training
    • Reporting on token value and liquidity of datasets
    • Website development for growth
    • Inclusion of referral link capture on website to monitor growth with a goal of keeping viral coefficient >1.
    • Add additional classification schemes (Tear: True/False;Implant: True/False)

As an orthopaedic surgeon myself, I really like the idea of opening up access to the footage of arthroscopic procedures. You definitely found a unique selling point there, however (in Europe at least), you would probably need the patient’s permission in order to share their data. But that could be obtained when they sign their ‘informed consent’ with regard to the surgical procedure.

I do think your proposal would be even stronger if you mention some possible ‘use-cases’ for a medical device company. You state that your “value hypothesis that medical device companies will engage with nCight” needs testing. At the moment, I can only think of usage data (such as how many sutures for the repair of structure X, or % of procedures that use instrument Y). But they can extrapolate that type of data from their inventories. What I would like to know, is an example of a use-case that is unique with regard to the actual content of the data, that is the arthroscopic footage.

But again, very cool to read about an application in the field of orthopaedic surgery.


Thanks for the interest. In the US, the main law that governs this data is HIPAA, which applies to Personal Health Information (PHI). As the arthroscopic images are de-identified there is no HIPAA concern. As the project expands to different type of data, specific consents will need to be obtained.

In regards to use case with med device you are correct their inventory will tell them what implant of theirs I use, but not what implants of their competitors. The analogy to think of here is in the pharma world. A company called IMS Health (now IQVIA) has provided pharma with rich data regarding prescribing habits of physicians allowing their marketing and sales teams to more effectively target physicians that use a high percentage of their competitor. There is no equivalent in the med device space. The majority of the reported data on the market, (in the US) comes from annually released CMS data (govt) that is incomplete and not timely.

Thank you for your quick response.

I now understand your emphasis on independent physicians. Large (academic) hospitals have contracts with companies (through tendering every X years) and thus these companies can estimate the possible usage of their products quite well for the hospital they don’t supply. Not so much for the independents.

But I still think using the arthroscopic footage only to answer yes/no questions with regard to device usage does not do justice to the quality and possibilities of the data you provide. I’ll try and think of more use-cases. Please do post if you think of additional ones.

I like this and will support you. Thanks for the proposal.

Continuing the discussion from Round 11: nCight, Inc-Converting Arthroscopic Surgical Images into a Data Union:

[Deliverable Checklist]


Grant Deliverable 1: Website and Web app for demonstration purposes of arthroscopic image data union

Web App mock up

Hi @nCight, I have updated your Deliverable Checklist and your proposal is now in Completed standing. All the best!