AVE algorithm beats lab test at detecting cervical cancer

Artificial intelligence is more effective at detecting cervical cancer than established lab tests, according to a pilot study out of Seoul, South Korea.

Looking to apply their Automated Visual Evaluation (AVE) algorithm to clinical workflow, tech company MobileODT launched a study in which they compared their AI approach to a run-of-the-mill cervical cancer detection technique in 212 women in South Korea. They used their existing AVE algorithm, which was previously validated by the National Cancer Institute and National Library of Medicine, to develop a clinical decision support (CDS) tool that could be used at the point of care and would ideally save patients time and money.

The pilot took place under the guidance of Laonz, a local medical equipment company. MobileODT researchers compared cancer detection with their CDS algorithm to Pap cytology in all women, measuring accuracy in comparison to biopsies. The study found the CDS tool to be “clearly” superior, according to a release.

“Using EVA with CDS in the clinic, the 10 participating doctors could know within minutes what the AI predicts about the patient, instead of waiting days for the laboratories to return their results,” Thomas Han of Laonz said in the release.

Indeed, the team’s work suggested CDS results would be readily available within a minute of testing, while the patient is still in the exam room. In contrast, Pap cytology can take up to three days to deliver reliable results.

“CDS on the EVA System is the first real-world demonstration of how AVE AI technology can be used for point-of-care screening and has the potential to improve the accuracy and access to cervical cancer screening globally,” Yael Misrahi, global head of partnerships for MobileODT, said.

The researchers are slated to present their findings at the ASCCP Annual Scientific Meeting in Atlanta April 4-7.