AIIMS, New Delhi, in collaboration with the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC), Pune, has recently introduced an AI platform named iOncology.ai to enhance the utilization of AI in healthcare, specifically for the early detection of cancer. The platform aims to address the global impact of cancer, a disease considered more fatal than cardiovascular issues in high and middle-income countries.
The Global Cancer Observatory (GLOBOCAN) estimated 19.3 million cancer cases globally in 2020, with India ranking third in incidence after China and the United States. A Lancet study predicts a significant rise in cancer cases in India, reaching 2.08 million by 2040, emphasizing the urgency for effective diagnostic measures.
Late detection remains a primary cause of cancer-related deaths, with 80% of cases globally reported late, resulting in only a 20% survival rate. AI plays a crucial role in reducing false negatives in manual cancer diagnosis.
The iOncology.ai platform, as described in the official statement from AIIMS Delhi, employs a sophisticated AI system capable of analyzing complex medical data, including diagnosis, with unparalleled accuracy and efficiency. The platform utilizes deep learning models and has the capacity for self-learning as the volume of clinical and imaging data increases, leading to continuous improvement.
The initial application of iOncology.ai at AIIMS focuses on breast and ovarian cancers, prevalent among women in India. The learning models of the platform have been customized for the early detection of these specific cancers, utilizing a substantial dataset of radiological and histopathological images collected during the examination and diagnosis of over 1,500 patient cases.
The success of the AI platform in clinical examinations and diagnoses at AIIMS has led to its implementation in five district hospitals across the country. The platform’s recent showcase at the Med-Hackathon event during AIIMS’s Research Day received positive feedback from cancer experts, prompting AIIMS to explore partnerships with other cancer hospitals and research centers in the country.
The iOncology.ai platform is a result of collaborative research and development between the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, AIIMS, New Delhi, and CDAC, Pune, and is set to contribute significantly to the early detection and management of cancer in India.