Early diagnosis and prediction of hematologic malignancies can significantly lower mortality rates and increase survival rates.  As the amount of data available for discovery grows dramatically, researchers now have an unprecedented chance to apply computation to produce new information and a deeper understanding of the disease.  The usage of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning based approaches is the best approach to manage this task.

The incorporation of AI and machine learning provides various tools and platforms to aid in the understanding and treatment of these life-threatening diseases. Research on clinical oncology is now more focused on decoding the molecular onset of cancer by understanding the complex biological architecture of cancer cell proliferation. Moreover, the use of AI and machine learning in clinical decision-making is believed to increase the chances of early disease prediction and diagnosis by NGS sequencing and high-resolution imaging techniques. It could also lead to introduce novel biomarkers for cancer diagnosis, designing novel personalized drugs, and delivery of personalized treatment strategies.

Through our Blood Cancer and AI Catalyst grants, we hope to fund projects that catalyze new research areas and collaborations in AI and machine learning and their applications to blood cancers to in the following areas:

  • Prognosis and Risk Stratification
    Personalized prognoses allow measuring the risk of transplantation and drug response.
  • Genomics and Response Prediction
    Better knowledge about the disease biology and genomics will enable choosing the most suitable therapeutics for patients.
  • Novel therapeutics
    Having access to data, researchers can develop and test new drugs in-vitro. 
  • Early and precise diagnosis
    Investigating early symptoms of blood cancers to detect disease at the earliest possible stage, which can potentially improve patient outcomes.

We hope to find new ways to prevent blood cancers, improve survival through early detection when the disease is most treatable, and develop more precise and effective treatments with fewer harmful side effects by combining scientific, clinical, and patient expertise in a collaborative, interdisciplinary environment that integrates the power of new technologies and interventions.

The Blood Cancer and AI Catalyst Grant is a one year proof of concept grant designed to determine the capabilities of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning based approaches in advancing blood cancer research, diagnoses, and improving therapeutic options and outcomes for those affected by a blood cancer.

Instead of funding research that is the next logical step in a program of work, these grants are meant to fund projects that will "push the needle" in terms of how we approach blood cancer prevention, early detection, and treatment.

Preference will be given to:

  • Proposals that are multidisciplinary (i.e. co-investigators come from different disciplines); and/or
  • Collaborations with experts in AI and/or machine learning; and/or
  • Proposals that advance training opportunities for underrepresented groups; and/or
  • Proposals that include early-career investigators