The type of therapy a cancer patient receives, largely depends on the trained eye of a pathologist.
Investigating diseased organs and tissues under the microscope is one of their tasks. However, human judgment is, by its very nature, subject to a certain degree of variation. To enhance the quality of diagnosis, scientists at Vetmeduni Vienna, the Medical University of Vienna and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Cancer Research have developed a software that specifically identifies cell structures and proteins in order to provide reliable diagnoses. The scientists published their data in the journal Plos One.
Together with the company Tissuegnostics, the pathologist Lukas Kenner and his colleagues have developed a software that is able to identify cancer cells in tissue sections and demonstrate the presence of specific biomarkers on cells. The overall information provides a precise picture of the disease and leads to the most suitable treatment.
According to the results of the study, "Two independent pathologists concur with each other only in regard of every third diagnosis."
"The recently developed software offers, for the first time, the option of eliminating the so-called inter-observer-variability, which is the systematic variability of judgement among different observers," chief investigators Lukas Kenner and Helmut Dolznig explain.
Software identifies the severity of cancer
The scientists investigated and analyzed 30 liver cell carcinomas, and clearly assigned these to the categories "negative" or "highly positive" with the help of the software. For this purpose the scientists analyzed the expression of specific proteins like Stat5 and JunB, which play an important role in the emergence of cancer. The software utilizes specific algorithms and highly sensitive digital photography, and is able to more clearly depict the matrix of cells and the cell nucleus than the view achieved by the human eye using a microscope.
Changes in cancer cells can be specified more exactly
"We have been using the software in research for several years. The technology will obviously not replace pathologists, but is a supplementary technology that markedly enhances the reliability of the diagnosis," Kenner states. Kenner also believes that the new technology will help to specify the categories in which in cancer cells are classified with greater accuracy in the future.
"Cancer therapies are expensive. The new software will help to make a better assessment as to when expensive therapy is justified and also identify those cases in which it is not necessary and the patient can be spared the burden of such treatment," Kenner says.
New tool for "precision medicine"
The so-called “precision medicine”, an advancement of personalized medicine, focusses on the health of individuals. With the aid of molecular biology-based methods, the ideal treatment is found for the individual patient.
This type of medicine is especially promising for the treatment of cancer. Tumors differ from person to person. Pathologists investigate tumor tissue on the molecular level and thus establish the most suitable type of therapy. "For instance, cancer cells bear different surface molecules. A suitable drug must target the correct molecule in order to counteract the growth of the tumor," Kenner explains. "Every patient should receive the most suitable therapy. Only such an approach is ethically justifiable and sensible in economic terms.”
The article „Reliable quantification of protein expression and cellular localization in histological sections“, by Michaela Schlederer, Kristina M. Mueller, Johannes Haybäck, Susanne Heider, Nicole Huttary, Margit Rosner, Markus Hengstschläger, Richard Moriggl, Helmut Dolznig and Lukas Kenner was published on the 11th of July 2014 in the journal PLOS ONE. http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0100822
About the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna
The University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna in Austria is one of the leading academic and research institutions in the field of Veterinary Sciences in Europe. About 1,200 employees and 2,300 students work on the campus in the north of Vienna which also houses five university clinics and various research sites. Outside of Vienna the university operates Teaching and Research Farms. http://www.vetmeduni.ac.at
Prof. Lukas Kenner
University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna, Austria (Vetmeduni Vienna)
T +43 664 1188385
Science Communication / Public Relations
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna)
T +43 1 25077-1153
Dr. Susanna Kautschitsch | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
MACC1 Gene Is an Independent Prognostic Biomarker for Survival in Klatskin Tumor Patients
31.08.2015 | Max-Delbrück-Centrum für Molekulare Medizin in der Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft
Fish Oil-Diet Benefits May be Mediated by Gut Microbes
28.08.2015 | University of Gothenburg
Longer, more severe, and hotter droughts and a myriad of other threats, including diseases and more extensive and severe wildfires, are threatening to transform some of the world's temperate forests, a new study published in Science has found. Without informed management, some forests could convert to shrublands or grasslands within the coming decades.
"While we have been trying to manage for resilience of 20th century conditions, we realize now that we must prepare for transformations and attempt to ease...
A University of Oklahoma astrophysicist and his Chinese collaborator have found two supermassive black holes in Markarian 231, the nearest quasar to Earth, using observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.
The discovery of two supermassive black holes--one larger one and a second, smaller one--are evidence of a binary black hole and suggests that supermassive...
A team of European researchers have developed a model to simulate the impact of tsunamis generated by earthquakes and applied it to the Eastern Mediterranean. The results show how tsunami waves could hit and inundate coastal areas in southern Italy and Greece. The study is published today (27 August) in Ocean Science, an open access journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).
Though not as frequent as in the Pacific and Indian oceans, tsunamis also occur in the Mediterranean, mainly due to earthquakes generated when the African...
In mountainous regions earthquakes often cause strong landslides, which can be exacerbated by heavy rain. However, after an initial increase, the frequency of these mass wasting events, often enormous and dangerous, declines, in fact independently of meteorological events and aftershocks.
These new findings are presented by a German-Franco-Japanese team of geoscientists in the current issue of the journal Geology, under the lead of the GFZ...
Bacteria do not cease to amaze us with their survival strategies. A research team from the University of Basel's Biozentrum has now discovered how bacteria enter a sleep mode using a so-called FIC toxin. In the current issue of “Cell Reports”, the scientists describe the mechanism of action and also explain why their discovery provides new insights into the evolution of pathogens.
For many poisons there are antidotes which neutralize their toxic effect. Toxin-antitoxin systems in bacteria work in a similar manner: As long as a cell...
20.08.2015 | Event News
20.08.2015 | Event News
19.08.2015 | Event News
31.08.2015 | Earth Sciences
31.08.2015 | Health and Medicine
31.08.2015 | Seminars Workshops