: Artificial intelligence (AI)-powered approaches are becoming increasingly used as histopathological tools to extract sub-visual features and improve diagnostic workflows. On the other hand, hi-plex approaches are widely adopted to analyze the immune ecosystem in tumor specimens. Here, we aimed at combining AI-aided histopathology and imaging mass cytometry (IMC) to analyze the ecosystem of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). An AI-based approach was used on H&E sections from 158 NSCLC specimens to accurately identify tumor cells, both adenocarcinoma and squamous carcinoma cells, and to generate a classifier of tumor cell spatial clustering. Consecutive tissue sections were stained with metal-labeled antibodies and processed through the IMC workflow, allowing quantitative detection of 24 markers related to tumor cells, tissue architecture, CD45+ myeloid and lymphoid cells, and immune activation. IMC identified 11 macrophage clusters that mainly localized in the stroma, except for S100A8+ cells, which infiltrated tumor nests. T cells were preferentially localized in peritumor areas or in tumor nests, the latter being associated with better prognosis, and they were more abundant in highly clustered tumors. Integrated tumor and immune classifiers were validated as prognostic on whole slides. In conclusion, integration of AI-powered H&E and multiparametric IMC allows investigation of spatial patterns and reveals tissue relevant features with clinical relevance.

Integrating AI-powered digital pathology and imaging mass cytometry identifies key classifiers of tumor cells, stroma, and immune cells in non-small cell lung cancer

Alloisio, Marco;Zucali, Paolo Andrea;Santoro, Armando;Mantovani, Alberto;
2024-01-01

Abstract

: Artificial intelligence (AI)-powered approaches are becoming increasingly used as histopathological tools to extract sub-visual features and improve diagnostic workflows. On the other hand, hi-plex approaches are widely adopted to analyze the immune ecosystem in tumor specimens. Here, we aimed at combining AI-aided histopathology and imaging mass cytometry (IMC) to analyze the ecosystem of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). An AI-based approach was used on H&E sections from 158 NSCLC specimens to accurately identify tumor cells, both adenocarcinoma and squamous carcinoma cells, and to generate a classifier of tumor cell spatial clustering. Consecutive tissue sections were stained with metal-labeled antibodies and processed through the IMC workflow, allowing quantitative detection of 24 markers related to tumor cells, tissue architecture, CD45+ myeloid and lymphoid cells, and immune activation. IMC identified 11 macrophage clusters that mainly localized in the stroma, except for S100A8+ cells, which infiltrated tumor nests. T cells were preferentially localized in peritumor areas or in tumor nests, the latter being associated with better prognosis, and they were more abundant in highly clustered tumors. Integrated tumor and immune classifiers were validated as prognostic on whole slides. In conclusion, integration of AI-powered H&E and multiparametric IMC allows investigation of spatial patterns and reveals tissue relevant features with clinical relevance.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11699/81163
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