AI tool NBDriver
Why in News?
- Researchers at IIT Madras have developed an AI tool called NBDriver (neighbourhood driver) for use in analysing cancer-causing mutations in cells.
How does the technique work?
- NBDriver is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) tool developed to analyse cancer-causing mutations in cells.
- A mutation is a change in a DNA sequence. Mutations can result from DNA copying mistakes made during cell division, exposure to ionizing radiation, exposure to chemicals called mutagens, or infection by viruses.
- By looking at the neighbourhood, or context, of a mutation in the genome, it can look at harmful “driver” mutations and distinguish them from neutral “passenger” mutations.
- Mutations that provide a selective growth advantage and thus promote cancer development are termed driver mutations and those that do not are termed passenger mutations.
Significance of this tool
- The usual approach misses out on mutations- Researchers usually analyse DNA sequences from large groups of cancer patients by comparing sequences from cancer as well as normal cells and determine whether a particular mutation occurred more often in cancer cells than random. However, this approach often misses out on relatively rare driver mutations.
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