Researchers develop new AI tool to help beat brain tumours
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A team of researchers has developed a new artificial intelligence (AI) tool called “DEPLOY”, to more quickly and accurately classify brain tumours.

As per the study published in the journal Nature Medicine, DEPLOY draws on microscopic pictures of a patient’s tissue called histopathology images.

The AI model was developed by researchers from the Australian National University (ANU) in collaboration with experts from the National Cancer Institute in the US.

DEPLOY was created as a way to predict DNA methylation and subsequently classify brain tumours into 10 major subtypes.

According to Dr Danh-Tai Hoang, precision in diagnosing and categorising tumours is “crucial for effective patient treatment”.

“The current gold standard for identifying different kinds of brain tumours is DNA methylation-based profiling,” Dr Hoang said.

“DNA methylation acts like a switch to control gene activity, and which genes are turned on or off,” he added.

The AI model was trained and validated on large datasets of about 4,000 patients from across the US and Europe. As per researchers, DEPLOY achieved an unprecedented accuracy of 95 per cent.

“Furthermore, when given a subset of 309 particularly difficult to classify samples, DEPLOY was able to provide a diagnosis that was more clinically relevant than what was initially provided by pathologists,” Dr Hoang mentioned.

“This shows the potential future role of DEPLOY as a complementary tool, adding to a pathologist’s initial diagnosis, or even prompting re-evaluation in the case of disparities,” he added.

In addition, the researchers mentioned that this AI model could eventually be used to help classify other types of cancer as well.

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