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David S. Ettinger, MD, FACP, FCCP


University of Chicago Joins Research Initiative to Develop AI Tools in Lung Cancer Treatment

By: Lauren Velentzas
Posted: Wednesday, September 14, 2022

The University of Chicago Medicine recently joined the I3LUNG project, a research initiative to develop a decision-making tool for creating individually tailored lung cancer treatment plans using artificial intelligence (AI) software and machine learning. The AI will analyze data from 2,000 patients across the United States, Italy, Germany, Greece, Spain, and Israel, as well as from multiple research centers. A total of 200 new patients will also be enrolled in a prospective study to gather new biological data from tumor genetics, the immune system, digital pathology, gut microbiome, imaging, and other genetic and molecular analyses. In addition, a psychological study will be conducted to better integrate patient experiences and preferences into decision-making tools.

The initiative is funded by a 5-year, €10 million grant from the European Union. The team at the University of Chicago Medicine includes researchers from the labs of Marina Garassino, MD, and Alexander Pearson, MD, PhD. They will help to process the original set of patient data and prepare it for use by other researchers. The hope is that the tools developed by the project can be used not only for treatment of non–small cell lung cancer but also for other types of cancer.

“Our work will use all of the patient data that we have access to—genetics, histology, lipidomics, proteomics,” said Dr. Garassino. “We can use [these] data to create a huge database of all that’s been collected in the past, and with all of that information, we can try to build an algorithm and train the [AI] to see if we can find a signature that will predict how effective immunotherapy will be for any given patient.”

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