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Transforming Diagnostic Service Delivery: One Lab’s Experience Integrating a Digital Pathology Platform and an LIS

Medicine has gone digital. This digital transformation can be seen in the rapid adoption of telemedicine, the use of digital radiology and medical imaging, and in precision medicine molecular and genomic testing. This post looks at how one laboratory, Cernostics, went digital through the implementation of a whole slide imaging and digital pathology platform integrated with an LIS. This integrated, digital solution was adopted to commercialize Cernostics’ artificial intelligence (AI) testing portfolio, ensure quality of diagnosis, and improve test turnaround time.

Cernostics is a pioneer in spatial biology and AI-driven image analysis of tissue biopsies, delivering precision diagnostic testing to improve patient outcomes. Its TissueCypher® platform and assays objectively risk stratify Barrett’s Esophagus patients to determine which patients are most likely to require interventional therapy to minimize the risk of progression to highly lethal esophageal cancer. By using AI and machine learning to accurately differentiate patients at a high risk for disease progression, only high-risk patients are recommended for endoscopic ablation or close surveillance, while patients at a low risk for progression can avoid unnecessary procedures and elongate the surveillance intervals.

Cernostics chose the Proscia Concentriq® Dx digital pathology platform to manage the multiple steps and large whole slide images of specialized protocols under one unified management system. Without the adoption of a digital pathology platform, the ability to scale test volume would be limited. The benefits of digital pathology include:

  • Improves test turnaround time
  • Better patient outcomes due to collaboration with sub-speciality expertise, QA protocols, and AI insights
  • Upgrades clinician experience including support for remote work and workload balancing
  • Elevates pathology's role as part of the care team

The Cernostics team also chose to integrate Concentriq with XIFIN LIS for a comprehensive workflow solution including accessioning, histology, and bi-directional integration with Proscia Concentriq to pass block/test/slide information and receive images and AI results for review and reporting. From the LIS, cases can be shared with internal pathologists or consultants for improved collaboration and real-time consulting for the most challenging cases. As a result of implementing Concentriq with XIFIN LIS, Cernostics has experienced a decrease in human effort required to process each test, an increase in productivity across the testing workflow, and the ability to scale to increase Cernostics’ growth rate while maintaining high quality diagnoses.

"We needed a mechanism to enable all of our workflow steps across many pathologists and end users, tests, specialized protocols for multiplex labeling, and image quality assessment. No other solution could manage all of the steps across our laboratory workflow."
Rebecca Thorne Critchley, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder
Cernostics

In the case of Cernostics, a scalable integrated digital pathology workflow is critical to their future growth and provides the following benefits: 

  • The ability to automatically send order information directly to Concentriq.
  • The LIS manages the histology workflow and transmits all block/slide/test data to Concentriq.
  • Concentriq, in turn, sends image URLs, image thumbnails, and AI analytics back to the XIFIN LIS for reporting.
  • Pathologists can launch images directly from case review window in LIS. This is the preferred method and provides added patient safety benefits ensuring that the pathologist is always looking at the correct slides for the case they are working on.

The adoption of a digital pathology platform with an integrated LIS helps make pathology an active part of the care team. It enables a more patient-centric approach for treatment planning and tracking. Without this integration, scalability is hampered. As the adoption of Cernostics’ TissueCypher tests grows, that scalability is a prerequisite to success. Cernostics proved exceedingly forward-thinking in this regard. Digitization enabled Cernostics to transform Barrett’s Esophagus patient management. The Concentriq digital pathology platform drives efficiency, quality, and innovation. Likewise, the integrated LIS workflow supports growth and scale, with bi-directional connectivity essential to fully realizing the benefits.


Published by XIFIN
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