Cancer is a tragedy that has destroyed many lives. Breast cancer in particular is a very common form of cancer, especially among women. Fortunately, we are coming closer to reducing the impact of breast cancer. One of the most effective ways to reduce the impact of cancer is to detect it early so that the symptoms can be relieved as much as possible and treatment can be started right away. Researchers recently have developed a program that may be able to discern breast cancer even more effectively than pathologists.
Can AI detect cancer?
A development by Google has proven that AI could become a valuable tool in detecting cancer. Researchers at Google have designed a deep learning tool with the capability of detecting advanced breast cancer at an even more accurate level than pathologists.
Google developed an algorithm called the Lymph Node Assistant, also known as LYNA, and trained it to detect the characteristics of tumors utilizing two sets of pathological slides. By doing so, the algorithm was given the capability to discern advanced cancer in various conditions.
How effective is the AI?
The effectiveness of the AI is remarkable. It has achieved an accuracy rate of 99 percent. This includes discernment of symptoms that are so small that most humans would not notice them.
Of course, LYNA is especially effective when it is used in addition to, not instead of, examination by pathologists. It reduces inspection time to a single minute, while cutting the rate of missed cancers by a factor of two.
What will the effects be?
Unfortunately, effects of this technology will be limited, at least for now. This technology detects the cancer when it is already in its late stages, when there is not yet any known cure.
However, once we get to the point that there is a cure for late-stage cancer, this technology will be a literal life-saver for countless people.