Prostate cancer cells, 3D illustration. Image Credit: Kateryna Kon/Science Photo Library via Getty Images

HealthTechnology United Kingdom27. March 2024

Turns out that Prostate Cancer is not ust one Disease. (Thanks, AI, for the Discovery!)

Through Artificial Intelligence (AI), a team of researchers based in the United Kingdom discovered two different subtypes of prostate cancer. The findings could revolutionize how the illness is diagnosed and treated, potentially saving thousands of lives in the future.

“Our research demonstrates that prostate tumors evolve along multiple pathways, leading to two distinct disease types,” explains lead researcher Dr Dan Woodcock, of the Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences at the University of Oxford. “This understanding is pivotal as it allows us to classify tumors based on how the cancer evolves rather than solely on individual gene mutations or expression patterns.”

Genetic data from thousands of prostate cancer samples across nine countries have been analyzed before studying changes in the DNA of prostate cancer samples from 159 patients. This led to the generation of an evolutionary tree that shows how the two subtypes of prostate cancer develop, eventually converging into two unmistakable disease types called evotypes. This finding – identifying the two cancer groups – was possible through an AI technique called neural networks, confirmed through two other mathematical approaches applied to different aspects of the data, and validated in independent datasets from Australia and Canada. In collaboration with Cancer Research UK, the team is now looking to develop a genetic test to provide a more precise prognosis for each patient and, consequently, tailor treatment decisions.

University of Oxford

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