Skip to Content

An interpretable AI model for recurrence prediction after surgery in gastrointestinal stromal tumour: an observational cohort study

eClinical Medicine Read the Article
ABSTRACT Background There are several models that predict the risk of recurrence following resection of localised, primary gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GIST). However, assessment of calibration is not always feasible and when performed, calibration of current GIST models appears to be suboptimal. We aimed to develop a prognostic model to predict the recurrence of GIST after surgery with both good discrimination and calibration by uncovering and harnessing the non-linear relationships among variables that predict recurrence.

Methods In this observational cohort study, the data of 395 adult patients who underwent complete resection (R0 or R1) of a localised, primary GIST in the pre-imatinib era at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (NY, USA) (recruited 1982–2001) and a European consortium (Spanish Group for Research in Sarcomas, 80 sites) (recruited 1987–2011) were used to train an interpretable Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based model called Optimal Classification Trees (OCT). The OCT predicted the probability of recurrence after surgery by capturing non-linear relationships among predictors of recurrence. The data of an additional 596 patients from another European consortium (Polish Clinical GIST Registry, 7 sites) (recruited 1981–2013) who were also treated in the pre-imatinib era were used to externally validate the OCT predictions with regard to discrimination (Harrell's C-index and Brier score) and calibration (calibration curve, Brier score, and Hosmer-Lemeshow test). The calibration of the Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) GIST nomogram was used as a comparative gold standard. We also evaluated the clinical utility of the OCT and the MSK nomogram by performing a Decision Curve Analysis (DCA).

Findings The internal cohort included 395 patients (median [IQR] age, 63 [54–71] years; 214 men [54.2%]) and the external cohort included 556 patients (median [IQR] age, 60 [52–68] years; 308 men [55.4%]). The Harrell's C-index of the OCT in the external validation cohort was greater than that of the MSK nomogram (0.805 (95% CI: 0.803–0.808) vs 0.788 (95% CI: 0.786–0.791), respectively). In the external validation cohort, the slope and intercept of the calibration curve of the main OCT were 1.041 and 0.038, respectively. In comparison, the slope and intercept of the calibration curve for the MSK nomogram was 0.681 and 0.032, respectively. The MSK nomogram overestimated the recurrence risk throughout the entire calibration curve. Of note, the Brier score was lower for the OCT compared to the MSK nomogram (0.147 vs 0.564, respectively), and the Hosmer-Lemeshow test was insignificant (P = 0.087) for the OCT model but significant (P 50% risk of recurrence. Interpretation

We present the first prognostic models of recurrence risk in GIST that demonstrate excellent discrimination, calibration, and clinical utility on external validation. Additional studies for further validation are warranted. With further validation, these tools could potentially improve patient counseling and selection for adjuvant therapy.

Funding The NCI SPORE in Soft Tissue Sarcoma and NCI Cancer Center Support Grants.

Contributors: Georgios Antonios Margonis, Seehanah Tang, Angelos Koulouras, Cristina R. Antonescu, Murray F. Brennan, Javier Martin-Broto, Piotr Rutkowski, Georgios Stasinos, Jane Wang, Emmanouil Pikoulis, Elzbieta Bylina, Pawel Sobczuk, Antonio Gutierrez, Bhumika Jadeja, William D. Tap, Ping Chi, Samuel Singer
image description