Potentially game-changing cancer research, using artificial intelligence to determine who will benefit from chemotherapy before treatment begins, is being conducted at Case Western Reserve University .

“Essentially training the machine to go in and find subtle patterns that a human reader, radiologist for instance, may not be able to visually discern but the computer can identify these more subtle patterns,” explains Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Case Western Reserve University, Anant Madabhushi, PhD. 

“These subtle patterns are what could tell us between somebody with a more aggressive cancer versus a less aggressive cancer," Dr. Madabhushi adds.

Madabhushi and his team recently had their work related to lung and breast cancers published.

“Now they [doctors] may decide, well we know that these patients are not going to respond, so maybe we need to change the therapy, maybe we need to do something else, maybe we need to compliment the chemotherapy  with something else,” he says.

He says this could keep patients form being subject to therapy that won’t work. 

“But let’s not forget the huge financial toxicity that subjecting the patient to the unnecessary treatment could have,” he says.

“Something like 42 percent of newly diagnosed cancer patients could lose their whole life savings in one year of their initial diagnosis, I mean those are frightening statistics.”

The next step is to get regulatory approval and potentially move this into the clinic in the next two to three years.

The goal is to start locally working with University Hospitals and Cleveland Clinic.

“We really think this could have, not just local impact or national impact but really international, global impact.”