BROSSARD, QUEBEC, CANADA, Sep 25, 2009 (Marketwire via COMTEX) – DIAGNOS inc. ("DIAGNOS" or "the Corporation")(TSX VENTURE:ADK), a leader in the use of artificial intelligence and advanced knowledge extraction techniques, announces today that it has appointed Dr. David LeBrun to its Scientific Advisory Board to assist in technical and scientific planning, development and validation efforts related to DIAGNOS' Digital Pathology initiative – Computer Assisted Pathologist Support (CAPS).
"We have been interested in applying our core competencies to cancer diagnosis decision support for some time, and with Dr. LeBrun's expertise and experience coupled with a renewed healthcare business unit strategy, we will greatly accelerate the process" said Mr. Andre Larente, President and CEO of DIAGNOS.
"We are very pleased to welcome a pathologist of Dr. LeBrun's calibre to our Scientific Advisory Board, and look to his expertise and leadership as we position to scale-up our commercial interests in cancer decision support" said Mr. Peter Nowacki, DIAGNOS General Manager – Medical.
The diagnosis of cancer generally relies on examination of a biopsy sample by a pathologist. The use of a cutting needle to biopsy a tumour is relatively safe, fast, non-invasive, and inexpensive. However, the small size of samples obtained by this technique poses a challenge to accurate pathological diagnosis.
Recent studies have raised questions about the ability of pathologists to diagnose and classify some cancers. For example, one study found that only 74% of lymphoma samples were diagnosed with a level of confidence deemed sufficient for directing treatment, and only 86% of these diagnoses were accurate. (Farmer et al., 2007; American Journal of Clinical Pathology) Consequently, pathologists are actively looking for tools that will assist them in providing confident, accurate diagnoses based on minuscule tissue samples. In light of these difficulties in diagnosing accurately, and in the context of several high-profile Canadian scandals involving pathologist error, the introduction of a computerized tool to assist pathologists in better decision-making is a timely initiative welcomed by specialists.
"The appointment of Dr. LeBrun is part of a larger DIAGNOS effort to develop, validate, and commercialize products for the healthcare market which presently includes a diabetic retinopathy screening and visualization product CARA, which is set to complete its clinical validation and regulatory approval process in 2009" added Mr. Nowacki.
About Dr. LeBrun
Dr. David LeBrun is a practicing pathologist and Associate Professor of Pathology and Molecular Medicine at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. Dr. LeBrun specializes in molecular mechanisms underlying haematological cancers, including malignant lymphoma and acute lymphoblastic leukemia – the latter an aggressive and relatively common cancer in children. He is a Fellow of The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, an active member of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, and practices at Kingston General Hospital.
DIAGNOS is developing a Computer Assisted Pathologist Support (CAPS) system which will enhance pathologists' ability to better visualize cancerous cells as well as to automatically quantify expression of immunofluorescent markers indicative of the presence of malignancy. When complete CAPS will comprise a graphical user interface and automated server-side image analysis platform accessible securely over the internet.
Founded in 1998, DIAGNOS is a publicly traded Canadian corporation (ADK), with a mission to commercialize technologies combining contextual imaging and traditional data mining thereby improving decision-making processes. DIAGNOS offers products, services, and solutions to clients in a variety of fields including healthcare, natural resources, and entertainment.
SOURCE: Diagnos Inc.
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