GE Healthcare and Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) announced a five-year partnership to enable safer and more precise cancer immunotherapies. Multiple diagnostic tools will be developed to help predict both the efficacy of an immunotherapy treatment and its adverse effects for a specific patient before the therapy is administered. This would allow physicians to better target immunotherapies to the right patients and avoid potentially damaging, ineffective and costly courses of treatments.

GE Healthcare and VUMC will retrospectively analyze and correlate the immunotherapy treatment response of thousands of VUMC cancer patients, with their anonymized demographic, genomic, tumor, cellular, proteomic and imaging data. They will then develop AI-powered apps that draw on this data to help physicians identify the most suitable treatment for each individual patient.

Simultaneously, GE Healthcare and VUMC will develop new positron-emission tomography (PET) imaging tracers, which together with the apps, will help physicians to stratify cancer patients for clinical trials. It is hoped that the PET tracers will ultimately also be used to monitor the efficacy of immunotherapies in everyday practice.

GE Healthcare and the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center will also collaborate on methods to improve productivity, efficiency and cost of stem cell transplant processing operations by automating processes, digitizing workflows, improving throughput and industrializing operations.

The first analytics application prototype will be available by the end of 2019 and the PET tracer proof-of-concept by the end of 2020.