qFIBS Demonstrates Suitability for Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) Assessment in Clinical Trials and Patient Care with Full Quantification of All Crucial Histopathological Features

SINGAPORE, Nov. 9,A 2019 /PRNewswire/ --A qFIBS, a novel automated algorithm developed by HistoIndex, has been shown to accurately distinguish different grades and stages of histological NASH features with a continuous measurement approach. This was highlighted in an international, multicenter collaborative study conducted by pathologists and hepatologists from China, Singapore, Europe and United States.This study, published recently in Hepatology* - a top-ranked peer-reviewed journal, was initiated to validate qFIBS for the evaluation of four crucial NASH features a?? fibrosis, lobular inflammation, hepatocyte ballooning, and steatosis a?? with the goal of showing a continuous quantitative, automated and accurate assessment of disease severity. Using 219 adult non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)/NASH liver biopsy samples from this global collaboration provided opportunities for the study to demonstrate the potential of qFIBS in assessing all key histopathological characteristics of NASH, as well as utility across differing ethnicities, environmental/nutritional backgrounds, age groups and disease severity. Findings from this study show that qFIBS assessments are more useful than current semiquantitative scores to measure NASH activity and quantify patients' responses to therapeutics used in clinical trials or patient care.NASH is liver inflammation and damage caused by lipotoxic fat, and is a potentially progressive liver disease that can lead to cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, liver transplantation, and death. The global prevalence of NAFLD is increasing in line with obesity, and China is one of the countries facing a major health crisis, having seen a dramatic increase in their population affected by NAFLD from 18% to 29% within a decade1,2; this prevalence has increased more than twice the rate in Western countries. China is expected to hit the highest growth globally in the prevalence of NAFLD, with about 315 million cases by 20303. Says Prof Wei Lai, corresponding author of this study and renowned hepatologist from the Peking University Hepatology Institute at the Peking University People's Hospital, "As China expects a spike in the prevalence of NAFLD, there is also a concerning situation of these cases progressing to NASH. This has prompted multiple drug discovery studies and clinical trials in China looking into NASH. And, inadequate diagnosis and follow-up are also due to the lack of reliable and cost-effective diagnostic tools for NAFLD, especially for NASH4. Having a precise digital pathology tool with AI-based imaging and analytical capabilities will help us derive a clearer assessment of liver biopsies, as well as provide significant histopathological insights in NASH clinical trials, ultimately leading to treatments that benefit NASH patients."A  AI-based Digital Pathology Imaging System
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