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Deep learning reveals cancer metastasis and therapeutic antibody targeting in whole body

By Chenchen Pan, Oliver Schoppe, Arnaldo Parra-Damas, Ruiyao Cai, Mihail Ivilinov Todorov, Gabor Gondi, Bettina von Neubeck, Alireza Ghasemi, Madita Alice Reimer, Javier Coronel, Boyan K. Garvalov, Bjoern Menze, Reinhard Zeidler, Ali Erturk

Posted 05 Feb 2019
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/541862

Reliable detection of disseminated tumor cells and of the biodistribution of tumor-targeting therapeutic antibodies within the entire body has long been needed to better understand and treat cancer metastasis. Here, we developed an integrated pipeline for automated quantification of cancer metastases and therapeutic antibody targeting, named DeepMACT. First, we enhanced the fluorescent signal of tumor cells more than 100-fold by applying the vDISCO method to image single cancer cells in intact transparent mice. Second, we developed deep learning algorithms for automated quantification of metastases with an accuracy matching human expert manual annotation. Deep learning-based quantifications in a model of spontaneous metastasis using human breast cancer cells allowed us to systematically analyze clinically relevant features such as size, shape, spatial distribution, and the degree to which metastases are targeted by a therapeutic monoclonal antibody in whole mice. DeepMACT can thus considerably improve the discovery of effective therapeutic strategies for metastatic cancer.

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