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Guy’s and St Thomas’ Trust to use AI tool in cancer trials

28/07/21

Mark Say Managing Editor

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Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust is to take part in a pilot on using AI based automation in identifying and matching patients with cancer to early phase clinical trials.

Trial Navigator diagram

It is to work with cancer informatics and digital pathology provider Inspirata in using its Trial Navigator software along with King’s Health Partners Experimental Cancer Medical Centre.

The software will be used in an evaluation within the cancer early phase trials unit.

It will involve applying oncology-specific natural language processing (NLP) to interrogate the patient’s individual medical reports and potential eligibility for trials, with the aim of reducing bottlenecks in identifying and matching patients to relevant clinical trials.

Currently, delays in candidate identification and the absence of real time visibility of open studies introduces a risk that patients miss out on trials for which they could have ultimately proved eligible.

Best outcomes

Danny Ruta, clinical AI lead at Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “At the Cancer Centre at Guy’s, we’re constantly striving to get the best possible outcomes for our patients, and sometimes that means providing them with the opportunity to enrol on trials of new cancer drugs when conventional treatments have been unsuccessful.

“AI technology offers the potential to better match our patients to available trials, but we need to evaluate them first to prove that they can deliver on their promise.

“We hope that the intelligent automation afforded by Trial Navigator will prove to be an effective solution for identifying greater numbers of our eligible cancer patient population for clinical trials.”

Debashis Sarker, reader in experimental Oncology in the School of Cancer and Pharmaceutical Studies of King’s College London, and honorary consultant in medical oncology at Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “I am hugely attracted to any toolset which serves to augment my own understanding of the different trial options available so that I can impart this confidence and where applicable, see more patients obtain prompt access to potential new treatments in a more timely manner.”

Inspirata said that Trial Navigator has been purposely designed to improve clinical trial matching by supporting both the clinician at the point of care, and trial coordinators with patient identification.

Image from Inspirata

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