AI Detects Breast Cancer Earlier: Cardiff University's Breakthrough

Researchers at Cardiff University have developed an AI system, training it to mimic a radiologist's gaze during medical scan interpretation, aiming to improve the accuracy of breast cancer detection.

AI Detects Breast Cancer Earlier: Cardiff University's Breakthrough

Thursday July 27, 2023,

2 min Read

Breast cancer detection may soon witness a revolutionary breakthrough, thanks to an innovative AI system developed by researchers at Cardiff University. Collaborating with radiologists in NHS hospitals across England and Wales, this team has trained AI to replicate the gaze of a radiologist reading medical scans. Such an advancement is poised to enhance the accuracy of medical diagnostics and expedite early detection of breast cancer.

This groundbreaking AI system can effectively identify areas on a scan where radiologists are most likely to look when preparing a diagnosis. "This isn't about replacing radiologists but making them more responsive," explains Hantao Liu of Cardiff University.

The UK government, recognising the vast potential of AI in healthcare, has pledged a £21 million investment in AI advancements across the NHS by the end of 2023. This funding will accelerate the deployment of promising AI tools across hospitals, aiming to improve patient outcomes for a variety of conditions, including cancers, strokes, and heart conditions.

Judi Rhys, CEO of Tenovus, a cancer charity, acknowledged the potential of AI in diagnosing cancers early. She noted the AI's "remarkable accuracy" and its capacity to process a vast number of scans without needing a break. This ability could accelerate the diagnosis of those more likely to have cancer.

The application of this AI technology is particularly crucial amidst the current strain on the NHS, worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic and a national cost-of-living crisis. The UK experiences a 30% shortage of radiology consultants, underscoring the need for AI support.

Beyond healthcare, AI technology is making significant strides in fields like education and hospitality. For example, AI can provide "personalised learning" to students, reducing teachers' workloads, and enhance customer service in the hospitality industry. Furthermore, AI is even being integrated into neuromodulation for better sleep health by detecting patterns and anomalies in sleep data.

As the potential of AI continues to unfold across various sectors, its application in early cancer detection is hailed as "phenomenal" by Tenovus. As AI systems like the one developed at Cardiff University continue to evolve, they will undeniably play a crucial role in our fight against diseases such as cancer.