RandyW Posted March 13, 2006 Share Posted March 13, 2006 Posted: Mon Mar 13, 2006 12:17 pm Post subject: Cancer’s “World Wide Web” http://www.technologyreview.com/BioTech ... 04,p1.html A lung image database is breathing life into “medical grid” vision. By Tom Mashberg For several years, clinicians and computer scientists in the U.S. and abroad have been trying to improve cancer care -- from diagnosis to treatment -- by building vast, interconnected databases full of patient information. They call these repositories “medical grids” and envision the day when a physician in Strasbourg or New Delhi can see, for example, that an indecipherable image of a patient’s lung is very similar to that of a San Francisco patient, whose case history could inform the decision to perform a biopsy or not. These nascent databases include not only patients’ medical histories, including such data as MRIs and CT scans, but also information about how they have responded to drugs. The benefits of these under-construction grids have been slow to come, partly because of technical problems and partly because federal privacy rules make data sharing difficult. But a National Cancer Institute project could test a multihospital system for comparing lung cancer images as early as this year -- a clear move toward putting grids to use. Kenneth H. Buetow, director of the institute’s Center for Bioinformatics in Bethesda, MD, calls it a crucial first step toward “a World Wide Web of cancer research.” For the past year, Buetow and his team have collected more than 50,000 images of lung cancers obtained from medical trials and archived them in a secure electronic repository at NCI. Their effort is part of a three-year, $60 million pilot project launched in 2004, which involves 50 cancer centers and more than 600 researchers. With the database now largely in place, testing is imminent. Buetow’s team has set up a website accessible to cancer specialists. The next goal is to enable software that will automatically compare new images of lungs with those already aggregated in the database. Algorithms will search for commonalities and build a directory of the likeliest matches. Clinicians in offices and hospitals will be able to contrast the resulting lung images with the scans they need to evaluate. Comparing images is just the first step. If all goes well, within three years Buetow hopes to conduct one or more clinical trials where a vast amount of medical data about lung cancer -- including images, types of tumors, drug courses, patient outcomes, even the molecular profiles of the disease -- would be used by physicians studying specific cases. The outcomes of these cases would be compared to those of cases treated through conventional approaches to cancer diagnosis. That comparison should yield information not just about the medical response of the patients but also about the accuracy with which the doctors made their diagnoses. _________________ KNOSPENLICHT UND CHEMO, ARBEITET FÜR MICH! LIVE FOR TODAY, LEARN FROM THE PAST, WORRY ABOUT TOMORROW WHEN IT COMES... **5/02 - NSCLC/STAGE IV/BAC/NEVER SMOKER/49 AT DIAGNOSES/PROGNOSES 24 MONTHS/ATTITUDE IT'S FAR FROM OVER/METS TO ADRENAL (ENLARGED) GLANDS/ALSO BLOOD STREAM/1 BONE/3 MRI SCANS/ALL CLEAN/2 PLATELET TRANSFUSIONS/NUMEROUS CT SCANS /ALSO TREBLE BY-PASS/STENT/3 HEART ATTACKS/HEART DISEASE/CONGESTIVE HEART FAILURE/ITP (IMMUNE THROMBOCYTOPENIC PURPURA) - SPLEEN REMOVED/SLEEP APNEA/ALLERGIES/AADD (adult ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER ** AS THE CHEMO DRIPS/MY JOURNEY WITH LUNG CANCER **12/02 - STARTING GEMZAR/CARPO (6 RNDS) **4/03 - CT SCANS RESULTS NOT EFFECTIVE NODULES GREW MORE/ADRENAL GLANDS SAME **6/03 - STARTING TAXOL (9 RNDS) **8/03 - CT SCANS RESULTS ENCOURAGING NEWS/SOME NODULES DISAPPEARED/SOME GREW SMALLER/DEVELOPED SOME NEW (ALL SMALL) ONES/ADRENAL GLANDS ALSO SMALLER **9/03 - STARTING TAXOL AGAIN (7 RNDS) **12/03 - CT SCANS RESULTS/EXCITING NEWS ALL NODULES GONE EXCEPT FOR (VERY SMALL) TWO/ADRENAL GLANDS ARE REMARKABLY SMALLER **1/04 - STARTING IRESSA FOR MAINTENANCE/CT SCAN RESULTS GREW 2 NEW NODULES/BACK UP TO 4/ADRENAL GLANDS THE SAME/STAYING ON IRESSA **3/04 - CT SCAN TO DETERMINE IF IRESSA IS WORKING/CT (BINGO!) SCAN RESULTS/REMARKABLE SUCCESS/ALL NODULES GONE OR BARELY VISIBLE/ADRENAL GLANDS STABLE. STAYING ON IRESSA **7/04 - STOPPING IRESSA NO LONGER WORKING/NODULES (SEVERAL) ARE STARTING TO RE-APPEAR IN BOTH (ALL STILL SMALL) LUNGS/SOME VERY SLIGHT INVOLVEMENT IN LYMPH NODES IN CHEST AREA/PELVIC AREA/ADRENAL GLANDS STILL STABLE **8/04 - STARTING NAVELBINE (9 RNDS) **9/14/04 - MILD HEART ATTACK PRIOR TO CHEMO/CATHETERIZATION/STOPPING CHEMO **9/27/04 - SEE ONC TO SEE WHERE WE ARE AT/CONT ON WITH TREATMENTS **10/25/04 - CHEMO CANCELED/HAVE PNEUMONIA/WHITE CELLS BORDERLINE **11/1/04 – CT SCAN SCHEDULED **11/03/04 - SEE DOCTOR TO RE-GROUP AND GO FROM THERE/CT SCAN RESULTS NODULES STARTING TO SHRINK AGAIN/EVERYTHING ELSE STABLE/LOOKS GOOD/WILL TAKE SHORT BREAK **12/04 - STARTING NAVELBINE AGAIN(4 RNDS) **1/7/05 - STOPPING NAVELBINE/PROBLEM WALKING/BALANCE/WEAKNESS LOWER BODY **1/8/05 - CT&MRI RESULTS/BOTH CLEAN/ARTHRITIS IN LOWER BACK/A LOT OF WEAR AND TEAR/SLIGHT NEUROPATHY IN FEET/TAKING A BREAK FROM NAVELBINE AND WILL WAIT UNTIL AFTER THE CT SCAN IN FEB TO SEE WHERE WE GO FROM HERE **2/9/05 - CT SCAN SCHEDULED **2/11/05 - CT SCAN RESULTS/SIX NODULES (TOTAL) IN BOTH LUNGS/ALL VERY TINY/EVERYTHING ELSE LOOKS GOOD/STARTING TARCEVA/NEXT DOCTORS APT 3/21/05 **3/21/05 - TOUCHED BASE WITH DOCTOR/WILL GET A CT SCAN ON 5/16/05/(HAD WRONG DATE) AND SEE DOCTOR (FOR RESULTS) ON 5/23/05 TO SEE WHERE WE GO FROM THERE **5/23/05 - CT SCAN RESULTS/STABLE/SOME NODULES DECREASED/SOME GREW SLIGHTLY/ SOME STABLE/GREW SOME NEW ONES BUT ALL ARE VERY SMALL/ALL UNDER 1.6 CM OR LESS/ONE IN THE UPPER RIGHT LUNG IF IT GIVES ME ANY PROBLEMS WITH PAIN OR ANYTHING MIGHT NUKE THAT ONE/ADRENAL GLANDS, LYMPH NODES IN THE UPPER CHEST, PELVIC AREA ARE STABLE/STAYING ON TARCEVA AND WILL GET ANOTHER CT SCAN AND SEE MY DOCTOR IN EARLY AUGUST/OTHER THEN FATIGUE SPIRITS ARE GOOD/STABLE IS VERY GOOD! **8/3/05 - CT SCAN SCHEDULED **8/8/05 - CT SCAN RESULTS/STILL STABLE/NO PROBLEMS WITH ANYTHING ELSE OUTSIDE THE LUNGS, EVERYTHING LOOKS GOOD/STAYING ON TARCEVA/WILL SEE MY DOCTOR IN EARLY OCT **10/5/05 - SAW MY DOCTOR TO TOUCH BASE/OTHER THEN FATIGUE/MEMORY ISSUES ALL IS WELL **10/28/05 - DIAGNOSED WITH AADD **12/1/05 - CT SCAN SCHEDULE **12/16/05 - DOCTOR'S APT SCHEDULE TO GO OVER CT SCAN/EVERYTHING GONE (IN BOTH LUNGS) EXCEPT FOR TWO VERY SMALL NODULES/EVERYTHING LOOKS GOOD WITH ADRENAL GLANDS ETC. **2/9/06 - ITP ACTING UP/PLATELETS DOWN TO 4000/STARTING (80MG) PREDNISONE/GOING BACK UP/TAPERING OFF PREDNISONE TO SEE IF THEY STAY STABLE/AS MY WONDERFUL GRANDMOTHER USED TO SAY, IT'S ALWAYS SOMETHING RICKY LOLOL **2/27/06 - MILD HEART ATTACK/WILL TREAT MEDICALLY/STILL IN THE PROCESS OF SOLVING THE PLATELET (ITP) PROBLEM/SPIRIT'S ARE VERY GOOD! **3/13/06 - APPOINTMENT WITH ONCOLOGISTS **PICTURE OF MY DAUGHTER TINA/ME VACATION SEP05 **PICTURE BELOW DESIGNED BY MY WONDERFUL DAUGHTER TINA! 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