Tag Archive for: digital health news

April 2023 Digital Health Roundup

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This month scientists are expanding existing technology to help with the fight against cancer. Nanopore sequencing technology on tRNA has been improved to help make a cost-effective test for cancer diagnosis. A technology company is building upon the CRISPR technology to choose more precise cancer treatments for patients. A new AI can predict a patient developing lung cancer within 1-6 years and is now in clinical trials.

Proof-of-Concept Nanopore Sequencing Technology Detects Transfer RNA Biomarkers for Cancer Diagnosis, Prognosis

Measuring transfer RNA biomarkers and blood samples may offer a simple, cost effective, precise alternative to invasive cancer diagnostic and prognostic methods, according to a study published on Thursday in Nature Biotechnology, reports Lab Pulse. Cells are always modifying transfer RNA molecules to become more stable and function better. If tRNA modifies incorrectly, it makes proteins that are faulty which develop into cancer. Specific tRNA modifications exist only in very specific cancers, this serves as a cancer biomarker. The tRNA molecules can also vary based on the state of the cancer. Getting tRNA from a patient’s blood sample can help diagnose cancer as well as determine the patient’s prognosis. Nanopore sequencing can isolate tRNA in one step, making this process more cost effective and timely. This technology monitors changes to an electrical current as the tRNA passes through a protein nanopore, this signal then gives researchers the specific tRNA sequence. Click to read the full story.

Start Up Function Oncology Aims to Make CRISPR Part of Next Revolution in Cancer

CRISPR technology is used to understand gene function. It is used to edit the disease-causing mutation of a gene to make more precise therapy choices for the patient. This genetic mutation is not found in most cancer patients, so until now this technology has helped a limited number of patients. Instead of making predictions about cancer targets, the function oncology technology takes measurements, Sampath said. Do it enough times, and a personalized picture starts to form showing which genes a cancer depends on, reports MedCity News. Using CRISPR, the company technology can inhibit a gene function and then see how it affects the tumor. Based on those results the patient can be prescribed a medication that can inhibit that gene. Scientists can match the patient tumor sample to the appropriate cancer drug. Once the biopsy of a patient tumor is taken, it is sent out to process. The processing time is about two weeks. After these two weeks, the patient and physician can have more precise treatment choices. Click to read the full story .

Promising New AI Can Detect Early Signs of Lung Cancer that Doctors Can’t See

Researchers in Boston are on the verge of what they say is a major advancement in lung cancer screening: Artificial intelligence that can detect early signs of the disease years before doctors would find it on a CT scan, reports NBC News. The AI is named Sybil and was developed at MIT in Cambridge. This artificial intelligence is currently in clinical trials. It can accurately predict cancer development in one to six years for the patient. It is the only AI to predict future cancer risk and can catch what the naked eye misses. Lung cancer is the third most common cause of cancer, and the treatment is much better for the patient when the cancer is caught early. Doctors use a CT scan to detect the cancer and Sybil looks for abnormal growth as well as other patterns that scientists are still learning about. This new AI helps radiologists with more precise readings. Researchers are working on getting more data that is racially diverse to help more people. Click to read the full story.

January 2023 Digital Health Roundup

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Science and technology are working together to help with cancer screening and treatment. Machine learning uses artificial intelligence to process data in large quantities with more efficiency and accuracy. A new multicancer screening test has been developed to detect cancer in early stages. This test uses a small amount of blood in combination with machine learning to screen for cancer. With the help of machine learning, a new genetic test has been helpful to test whether a specific cancer treatment will be effective in ovarian cancer patients. New technology is now available to expedite necessary surgery for lung cancer patients.

New Multi-Cancer Test Can Detect Disease at Early Stages with Small Amounts of Blood, Urine

Now, researchers from Chalmers University of Technology have demonstrated that a previously untested method can detect multiple types of cancers early on, including types that are currently difficult to detect reports StudyFinds. While studying metabolism, scientists discovered glycosaminoglycan, which is crucial for cell growth and repair. This sugar has been found to be a biomarker for early cancer detection. Scientists use a small amount of blood or urine with machine learning algorithms to detect this metabolite. It has been shown to help detect all 14 different cancers in their early stages. This test is a simple method that costs less to produce, making it more easily available for patients. Detecting cancer earlier allows for earlier access to treatment for cancer patients which improves patient outcomes. Click to read the full story.

Genetic Test Identifies Ovarian Cancer Patients Likely to Benefit from PARP Inhibitors

The genetic test helps to identify patients who do not benefit from the drug, thus avoiding unnecessary treatment and the adverse effects associated with the drug reports Technology Networks. The PARP inhibitors used to treat this cancer have the potential to cause serious side effects. This drug is used to treat more than half of patients with ovarian cancer. The test checks for a deficiency in specific DNA repair pathways; these are the patients that have tumor types that are sensitive to the PARP inhibitors. Patients that can have these inhibitors can use this therapy for treatment of their ovarian cancer as well as maintenance treatment after surgery. This test uses a genetic test with the help of algorithms from machine learning to guide the patient’s treatment. Doctors use this test to give the proper treatment for the cancer, thereby extending the patient’s life. Click to read the full story.

Game-Changing Tech Means You Could get Surgery the Same Day You’re Diagnosed with Lung Cancer

It can take several weeks to diagnose, and then treat someone with surgery, for lung cancer. But for some patients, INOVA Health System can do both procedures on the same day, thanks to new cutting-edge robotic technology reports NBC Bay Area. This process involves doctors using a bronchoscopy with a biopsy. It allows for staging the lymph nodes and surgery if needed, all in one day. Patients usually must wait weeks or months for the results of a biopsy as well as scheduling a surgery. This wait time causes the patients added stress and anxiety. The expense to the patient is also less by having the procedure done in one day versus paying for two hospital visits. To qualify for this procedure, the patient needs to have findings of a lung nodule that has not spread anywhere. Click to read the full story.

October 2022 Digital Health Roundup

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Scientists have out done themselves in the arena of innovation for cancer treatments and detection this month. Fibroscan is a tool using ultrasound for oncologists to detect liver changes that could lead to further testing for diagnosing and treating liver cancer. A group of researchers have developed artificial intelligence to help oncologists determine the best drug therapy for each patient and their individual cancer. A small wireless implant is being tested to help battle deadly brain cancer tumors with less side effects than standard treatments for the patient.

Can A Fibroscan Detect Liver Cancer

Fibroscan is a noninvasive imaging test that may help diagnose liver cancer reports Healthline.com. Fibroscan uses ultrasound or sound waves to see the liver. It bounces sound waves off of the liver and can show signs of damage such as scarring and stiffness. Scarring or stiffness can be signs of cancer. Fibroscan shows more detail than a standard ultrasound and it can show changes to the liver over time. This tool has been helpful for finding hepatocellular carcinoma which is the most common type of liver cancer. If the Fibroscan detects certain changes to the liver, a biopsy can be done to detect if cancer is present. The Fibroscan is a quick test lasting about 15 minutes that requires fasting 3 hours before the test. Early detection of liver cancer increases the patient’s chance of survival. Click to read the full story.

It’s Like Molecular Speed Dating: LSU Using Artificial Intelligence In Cancer Treatment

Using algorithms originally designed to map complex social networks, like those utilized by Facebook, researchers generated three-dimensional graphs of molecular datasets that include cancer cell lines, drug compounds and interactions among proteins inside the human body reports TheAdvocate.com. This AI helps oncologists find drug therapies that work best on each patients different cancer. The information this AI provides will help patients get the correct treatment quicker and cut cost by choosing the right treatment the first time. The graphs created are analyzed by the AI. Researchers train the AI by inputing data, then ask it for what medicine would work best for that particular cancer. The AI makes a prediction based on the data and the researchers test the results in a wet lab. The team used six combinations of cancer cell lines with the drugs most toxic to their gene profile. The AI is able to match the cancer cell lines with the best drug much quicker, giving the patient the best treatment option. Click to read the full story.

A Small Wireless Implant Could Help Kill Deadly Brain Tumors

Researchers at Stanford Medicine developed and tested a wireless device in mice that is small enough to be inserted into a mouse’s brain to kill cancerous cells reports InterestingEngineering.com. This implant is activated remotely and heats up nanoparticles that are injected into the cancerous tumor to kill the cancer. The nanopartilces treat only the tumor so it has less side effects than chemotherapy and radiation. The implant uses photothermal treatment which uses light to heat up the nanoparticles. Photothermal treatment used to only be used during surgery when the brain was exposed to a light, but with the implant it can be done remotely. The device generates heat at the precise site of the tumor and is implanted between the skin and the skull. Then gold nanoparticles are injected into the tumor through a tiny hole in the skull. The implant then sends out infrared light that penetrates the brain tissue to activate the nanoparticles, it increases the temperature by up to 5 degrees Celsius. The power of the implant and wavelength of light can be adjusted to treat the cancer. Click to read full story.