Google says its AI could detect early signs of cancer
Its technology could catch things missed by trained oncologists, the company says.
Abrar Al-HeetiVideo producer / CNET
Abrar Al-Heeti is a video host and producer for CNET, with an interest in internet trends, entertainment, pop culture and digital accessibility. Before joining the video team, she was a writer for CNET's culture team. She graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Though Illinois is home, she now loves San Francisco -- steep inclines and all.
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Using lung cancer scans from the National Cancer Institute and Northwestern University, Google trained a neural network to detect malignancy at a level equal to or above the abilities of a trained radiologist, Peng said.
In one case, a patient with no symptoms and no history of cancer had a CT scan that was interpreted as normal. A year later, another scan picked up late stage cancer. Google used its AI system to review the initial scan, and the model was able to detect the early signs a year before the patient was diagnosed.
Peng said for patients like this, early detection could translate to an increased survival rate of 40%.
"Clearly, this is a promising but early result," Peng said. "We're very much looking forward to partnering with the medical community to use technology like this to help improve outcomes for patients."
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