Despite enormous medical advances in recent decades, lung cancer is still one of the most common tumour diseases and the cause of most cancer deaths worldwide. In the newly opened Christian Doppler Laboratory for Machine Learning driven Precision Imaging, improved prediction models for lung cancer and personalised lung cancer treatments are to be developed with the help of artificial intelligence. The focus is on a translational approach with the aim of introducing new knowledge from basic research into clinical application as quickly as possible.
In the new CD laboratory, radiological and pathological images as well as molecular data from lung cancer patients are linked with the help of new machine learning (ML) methods. ML is a branch of artificial intelligence that can recognise patterns and generate knowledge from experience. The laboratory will investigate and develop novel precise prediction models for the assessment and prediction of treatment response in lung cancer, which can be specifically tailored to individual patients. In order to achieve this goal, the CD lab directors Georg Langs and Helmut Prosch from the Department of Biomedical Imaging and Image-guided Therapy at MedUni Vienna are working with corporate partner Siemens Healthineers and an interdisciplinary team from the fields of machine learning, medical imaging, oncology and pathology, among others. The cooperation partners also include the Department of Innovation and Digitalisation in Law at the University of Vienna and the Klinik Floridsdorf.
Ministry of Labour and Economics promotes cooperation between science and business
Martin Kocher, Minister of Labour and Economic Affairs, emphasises the importance of individualised medicine: "Every lung cancer disease progresses differently, doctors must always adapt to the individual case. This new CD lab unites top-class researchers from a wide range of disciplines who work together on innovative solutions concerning the future topic of machine learning. In doing so, they create the basis for improving the individual success of lung cancer therapy and make an important contribution to the health and quality of life of those affected and their relatives. I wish you much success for this important and pioneering project."
"The future results of our project will make important contributions to improving the individual success of lung cancer therapy. Therefore, more patients than before should be able to simultaneously benefit from the advantages of machine learning in medicine," explain laboratory directors Georg Langs and Helmut Prosch. "With our research, we also aim to create the basis for methods that will not only benefit lung cancer patients, but also those affected by other types of cancer."
Further development of personalised medicine
"With the research and findings on precision imaging at the Christian Doppler Laboratory for Machine Learning Driven Precision Imaging, MedUni Vienna is taking further important steps towards the further development of targeted, personalised medicine. Moreover, with its translational approach, the research facility is an example of MedUni Vienna’s practice of closely linking fundamental research and clinical application. In this manner, new scientific findings flow directly into the development of innovative therapies for our patients," says Michaela Fritz, Vice Rector for Research and Innovation at the Medical University of Vienna, emphasising the importance of CD Laboratories.
"The interplay of medicine, innovative technology, digital infrastructure and artificial intelligence are the cornerstones of state-of-the-art precision medicine. At the Christian Doppler Laboratory, we jointly conduct trend-setting research and development that combines cutting-edge medicine with the latest technologies in order to bring technological and digital innovations into application as quickly as possible. Our strongly translational and interdisciplinary approach will lead the way in translating research findings into targeted innovations in the healthcare system and thus generate direct benefits for patients," says Bernd Ohnesorge, President Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) at Siemens Healthineers.
About the Christian Doppler Laboratories
At Christian Doppler Laboratories, application-oriented basic research is carried out at a high level, with outstanding scientists cooperating with innovative companies. The Christian Doppler Research Association is internationally regarded as a best-practice example for the promotion of this cooperation. Christian Doppler Laboratories are jointly financed by the public sector and the participating companies. The most important public funding body is the Federal Ministry of Labour and Economic Affairs.