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Webcast: Fit-for-purpose: The Evolving Role of Liver Biopsies in MASH Clinical Trials and Patient Management

Surfing the NASH Tsunami Podcast: S4-3.6 – Interview with Co-founder & CSO of HistoIndex, Dean Tai, on AI-Assisted Histology

Date: January 16, 2023

Surfing NASH presents an exclusive interview with Dean Tai, Co-Founder and CSO of global-leading AI digital pathology provider HistoIndex. Dean joins Co-Surfers Jörn Schattenberg and Roger Green to discuss the application and compelling results of AI-assisted histologic assessment of Phase 2 trials on aldafermin and resmetirom.

About the Webinar

In an exclusive interview, Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of HistoIndex, Dr. Dean Tai, joins Fatty Liver Researcher Prof. Dr. Jörn Schattenberg on Surfing the NASH Tsunami podcast with host, Roger Green. The trio discuss pertinent questions stemming from data derived from Phase 2 trial results of aldafermin and resmetirom whereby liver volume reduction was achieved in a considerably abbreviated period. HistoIndex was able to subsequently investigate fibrosis reduction in these studies by conducting AI-assisted histologic assessment to gather a deeper understanding of fibrosis dynamics on a continuous scale.

Jörn introduces the corresponding poster held at NASH-TAG 2023, which reviews the application and compelling results of the qFibrosis® and qSteatosis® products. Dean then elucidates how AI-assisted zonal mapping of the liver delivers a targeted and statistically-improved assessment of fibrosis reduction. Interestingly, two distinctly different fibrosis regression patterns emerged between the aldafermin and resmetirom cohorts. The implication: highly-precise assessment of liver slides is sparking a spate of new questions surrounding therapeutic possibilities. Jörn offers two cogent observations. First, these technologies can drastically improve understanding of how much change in fibrosis really occurs. He points out that while many different MOAs are trialed in comparable populations, it may be that not all drugs are affecting fibrosis regression by the same mechanism. With the technology implemented by HistoIndex, researchers can now begin to assess the nuances of how and where these drugs act.

A different, but critically important idea emerges: patients deserve to have the fullest extent of utility extrapolated from their donated tissue. There is also noted to be a plethora of existing data containing what Dean describes as “a gold mine” for retrospective analysis. The group continues on to explore and compare the myriad of potential future applications of these tools. It becomes clear that advancements in AI-based digital pathology are paving a path for an entirely new, imaginative line of thinking for the Fatty Liver field. Listen to the full feature for more on this illuminating topic.