Dr. Tamara Jamaspishvili wins best poster for prostate cancer research at national conference
On the heels of winning the 2022 Prostate Cancer Foundation Young Investigator award, Dr. Tamara Jamaspishvili has taken home the top prize at the Digital Pathology Association (DPA) 2022 conference in Las Vegas.
The work presented at the DPA annual meeting was preliminary work for the project proposal recently funded by PCF Young Investigator Award. In this study, Jamaspishvili and her colleagues at NCI have validated previously developed in-house artificial intelligence (AI)-based workflow for automated detection of tumor suppressor gene, PTEN loss (AI-qPTEN) to predict disease recurrence and metastasis using digital images of immunohistochemically stained post-surgical prostate cancer tissues. This study found that AI-based quantitative thresholds significantly improved the risk stratification of localized prostate cancers compared to conventional, binary assessment that is routinely performed in pathology practices. Using this data from the multi-institutional CANARY retrospective cohort, researchers claim that AI-qPTEN can be added to traditional clinical risk-assessment tools to identify more patients with metastasis and recurrence who were previously misclassified as low-risk patients. According to this study, the proposed method could serve as a "cost-efficient, bias-free, objective risk-assessment method” that may change treatment decisions after surgery for certain clinically “low-risk” patients. This method could be especially important for low- to middle-income countries with limited access to expensive molecular testing. Additionally, this study confirms, one more time, the benefit of implementing quantitative pathology and AI-based tissue biomarker assessment methods over conventional approaches to advance precision medicine and improve the care of oncology patients.