Nuclear detection, segmentation and morphometric profiling are essential in helping us further understand the relationship between histology and patient outcome. To drive innovation in this area, we setup a community-wide challenge using the largest available dataset of its kind to assess nuclear segmentation and cellular composition. Our challenge, named CoNIC, stimulated the development of reproducible algorithms for cellular recognition with real-time result inspection on public leaderboards. We conducted an extensive post-challenge analysis based on the top-performing models using 1,658 whole-slide images of colon tissue. With around 700 million detected nuclei per model, associated features were used for dysplasia grading and survival analysis, where we demonstrated that the challenge's improvement over the previous state-of-the-art led to significant boosts in downstream performance. Our findings also suggest that eosinophils and neutrophils play an important role in the tumour microevironment. We release challenge models and WSI-level results to foster the development of further methods for biomarker discovery.
We establish an open framework for developing plan optimization models for knowledge-based planning (KBP) in radiotherapy. Our framework includes reference plans for 100 patients with head-and-neck cancer and high-quality dose predictions from 19 KBP models that were developed by different research groups during the OpenKBP Grand Challenge. The dose predictions were input to four optimization models to form 76 unique KBP pipelines that generated 7600 plans. The predictions and plans were compared to the reference plans via: dose score, which is the average mean absolute voxel-by-voxel difference in dose a model achieved; the deviation in dose-volume histogram (DVH) criterion; and the frequency of clinical planning criteria satisfaction. We also performed a theoretical investigation to justify our dose mimicking models. The range in rank order correlation of the dose score between predictions and their KBP pipelines was 0.50 to 0.62, which indicates that the quality of the predictions is generally positively correlated with the quality of the plans. Additionally, compared to the input predictions, the KBP-generated plans performed significantly better (P<0.05; one-sided Wilcoxon test) on 18 of 23 DVH criteria. Similarly, each optimization model generated plans that satisfied a higher percentage of criteria than the reference plans. Lastly, our theoretical investigation demonstrated that the dose mimicking models generated plans that are also optimal for a conventional planning model. This was the largest international effort to date for evaluating the combination of KBP prediction and optimization models. In the interest of reproducibility, our data and code is freely available at https://github.com/ababier/open-kbp-opt.