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Researchers at Western ­niversity Hope to ­se Artificial Intelligence to Improve Breast Cancer Patient Outcomes


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Micrograph showing a lymph node invaded by ductal breast carcinoma, with extension of the tumour beyond the lymph node.

Researchers at the University of Western Ontario believe artificial intelligence can help remove the guesswork from breast cancer treatment.

Credit: Nephron/Wikipedia

Researchers at the University of Western Ontario believe artificial intelligence (AI) can help remove the guesswork from breast cancer treatment.  

A team led by professor Peter Rogan conducted a genetic analysis of the tumors of breast cancer patients.  The researchers then used AI to identify the genetic factors that cause patients to respond well to paclitaxel and gemcitabine, leading their cancer to go into remission, while others develop a resistance to the two common chemotherapy medications.  

Working with data from 2012, the researchers were able to identify the 84-percent of women with breast cancer who would go into remission in response to the drug paclitaxel.  The genetic signature identified for the drug gemcitabine was able to predict remission using preserved tumor tissue with 62- to 71-percent accuracy.  

The team plans to refine the genetic signatures and improve the predictions further.  "The earlier we treat a patient with the most effective medication, the more likely we can effectively treat or possibly even cure that patient," Rogan says.

From University of Western Ontario
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Abstracts Copyright © 2015 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


 

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