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Student Mick van der Spoel wins Philips AI thesis award for brain tumor research

Published: 25th November 2021 Last updated: 01st December 2021

Mick van der Spoel, master's student Data Science and Society, has won the Philips Data Science and Artificial Intelligence in Health Care thesis prize. He designed a model to fill information gaps of brain tumor patients by using their existing MRI scans. Van der Spoel will receive the prize (€3000) on November 29 at the Royal Holland Society of Sciences (KHMW).

Van der Spoel participated in the WeCare research project at Elisabeth-TweeSteden Hospital (ETZ) to develop deep learning models for brain tumor research. During his internship, he discovered a mismatch between the scientific field of deep learning and what clinical practice needs.

Elisabeth Hospital implements model
Using AI, Van der Spoel developed a method to create missing MRI scans from existing MRI scans. Neurological examination of the brain usually involves four different types of MRI scans, but not all of these scans are present in all patients. This makes it difficult to do research that requires all four scans (e.g., in the automatic detection of brain tumors). 

Van der Spoel's method can also eliminate the need for a costly additional round of scans in some cases. After successful development, the Elisabeth-TweeSteden Hospital (ETZ) will continue to implement the model.

More information 
The award ceremony will take place on 29 November from 15:30 and can be attended via:
Livestream award ceremony 29 November 2021 | KHMW.
The title of Mick van der Spoel's winning thesis is 'Conditional Generative Deep Learning Models for Image-to-Image Translation in Magnetic Resonance Neuroimaging' (thesis supervisor: Dr Sharon Ong). You can contact science editor Tineke Bennema, via persvoorlichters@tilburguniversity and tel. 013-4668998.