OracleBio’s work published in ‘ICOS-Positive Regulatory T Cells in Hepatocellular Carcinoma’ paper
28 July 2022
By Mark Laurie

Keep your finger on the pulse.

Sign up for our newsletter and automatically receive our latest research, insights & news 📨

We are delighted to see this collaborative study being published!

The paper, ‘ICOS-Positive Regulatory T Cells in Hepatocellular Carcinoma: The Perspective from Digital Pathology Analysis‘, contains work from OracleBio alongside National Taiwan University Hospital and Kymab Ltd (now part of Sanofi).

It was a pleasure working with the team, and this study demonstrates the impact that Quantitative and Spatial Digital Pathology can have on understanding the expression of a novel therapeutic target in the context of Hepatocellular cancer (HCC) biology and patient outcomes.

We’ve highlighted some of the key points from the paper regarding the digital pathology workflow below, but please do read the full paper for more details via the Karger Publisher link at the bottom of this article.

Our key take-aways regarding the digital pathology workflow:

  • ICOS/Foxp3 dual-stained IHC sections were assessed by OracleBio using Indica Labs HALO® software
  • Whole slide scanned images were reviewed by a pathologist and regions of interest (ROI) including tumor center, margin, and peritumor area, were defined across each sample
  • The margin area contained a 1mm wide area (500μm wide inner plus 500μm wide outer zone from the tumor border)
  • The cell algorithm development process involved an initial 3-chromogen color deconvolution step to separate the dual IHC chromogens plus hematoxylin counterstain
  • Cell objects were formed by applying weighted optical density values to the individual chromogens
  • Each positive cell type, including dual positive (ICOS and Foxp3) or single-positive (ICOS or Foxp3) cells, was then identified using defined size, shape, and subcellular compartment staining parameters
  • A tissue classifier algorithm was developed to automatically segment the viable tissue, excluding artifacts and glass areas, per ROI for analysis
  • The completed algorithms were applied to all tissue section images in the study in an automated and objective manner to generate detailed cell-by-cell data for dual and single chromogenic markers within the defined ROI
  • Spatial relationships of the different cell populations identified within the ROI were further investigated based on the x, y vector coordinates of each detected cell object
  • An increased abundance of ICOS+ Tregs in the tumor center in comparison to the peritumor area indicates a strong immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment of HCC
  • A high proportion of ICOS+Foxp3+ cells and a shorter distance between ICOS+ Tregs and other ICOS+ cells were associated with a poor OS, suggesting that depleting ICOS+ Tregs might provide clinical benefit for patients with HCC

📄 Read the full paper on Karger: https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/525239

Karen McClymont

About the author: 

Mark Laurie — Marketing Manager at OracleBio

With over a decade in senior marketing and sales roles within the IT, technology, and entertainment sectors, Mark brings a fresh perspective and unique skill set to lead OracleBio’s global marketing and communications efforts; helping share our story and build our community.

Find out about OracleBio's Pathology Expertise

Learn about our GCP Image Analysis Services

Speak to our experts

Planning your study and need advice on your image analysis? We’d love to chat!