Principal Investigator: Dr Leandro Pecchia, University of Warwick.
Project start year: 2018
Co-Investigators: Professor Helen Byrne - University of Oxford.
Other partners: Dr Pasquale Innominato - Warwick Medical School; Prof Stephen Fôn Hughes - BCUHB, North Wales & North West Urological Research Centre; Prof Mike Chappell & Dr Vishwesh Kulkarni - University of Warwick.
Closed-loop control for optimising chemotherapy infusion.
“Inner clock adapts our physiology to the dramatically different phases of the day, […] regulating critical functions such as behaviour, hormone levels, sleep, body temperature and metabolism”. This phenomenon is known as the biological clock or circadian rhythm and in 2017 its discoverers were awarded the Nobel Prize in medicine. Due to circadian rhythms, the efficacy and side effects of chemotherapy change throughout the day. Chemotherapy in turn alters circadian rhythm. This creates a closed-loop requiring control.
While circadian rhythms can be monitored using blood/salivary/urine hormone tests, such tests are not practical at home and do not provide continuous real-time monitoring. Combining artificial intelligence (machine learning and deep learning) and signal processing with commercial sensors embedded in smartwatches or clothes that measure physiological and behavioural attributes (features/variables) offers unprecedented and as yet unexplored opportunities to monitor circadian rhythms in real time.
To the best of our knowledge, this project will be the first to:1) Develop models for real time monitoring of circadian rhythms;2) Model how circadian rhythms affect response to chemotherapy;3) Answer fundamental questions that will pave the way for developing a (personalised) closed-loop control system in which the delivery of chemotherapy is related to a patient’s circadian cycle.This project could revolutionise the administration of chemotherapy, improve patient responses, and reduce side effects and costs.