Genetic mutation and biological pathway prediction based on whole slide images in breast carcinoma using deep learning

Hui Qu, Mu Zhou, Zhennan Yan, He Wang, Vinod K. Rustgi, Shaoting Zhang, Olivier Gevaert, Dimitris N. Metaxas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Breast carcinoma is the most common cancer among women worldwide that consists of a heterogeneous group of subtype diseases. The whole-slide images (WSIs) can capture the cell-level heterogeneity, and are routinely used for cancer diagnosis by pathologists. However, key driver genetic mutations related to targeted therapies are identified by genomic analysis like high-throughput molecular profiling. In this study, we develop a deep-learning model to predict the genetic mutations and biological pathway activities directly from WSIs. Our study offers unique insights into WSI visual interactions between mutation and its related pathway, enabling a head-to-head comparison to reinforce our major findings. Using the histopathology images from the Genomic Data Commons Database, our model can predict the point mutations of six important genes (AUC 0.68–0.85) and copy number alteration of another six genes (AUC 0.69–0.79). Additionally, the trained models can predict the activities of three out of ten canonical pathways (AUC 0.65–0.79). Next, we visualized the weight maps of tumor tiles in WSI to understand the decision-making process of deep-learning models via a self-attention mechanism. We further validated our models on liver and lung cancers that are related to metastatic breast cancer. Our results provide insights into the association between pathological image features, molecular outcomes, and targeted therapies for breast cancer patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number87
Journalnpj Precision Oncology
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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