Foran Lab - Research Overview

Foran LabFuture progress in several key areas of cancer research and drug discovery will rely upon the capacity of investigators to consistently detect, track and characterize subtle changes that occur throughout the course of disease progression. Tissue microarray technology holds great promise to distinguish among subclasses of disease and advancing investigative research as it allows to explore clinicopathologic correlations postulated upon the evaluation of whole histology sections. In this regard, advanced imaging and computational tools, as compared to traditional methods of assessment, enable detection of sensible changes in tumor tissues and surrounding microenvironment in a more reliable and consistent manner.

One of the goals of Dr. Foran's laboratory research is to develop a set of algorithms and software tools which facilitate automated imaging, analysis, and archiving of tumor tissue microarrays. In doing so, Dr. Foran's laboratory is currently working to determine the relationship between tumor image analysis-derived information and molecular status/clinical outcome in a way that will permit researchers to systematically carry out large-scale comparative analyses of human cancers.

Another focus of the lab is the creation of a clinical data warehouse where data arising from Electronic Medical Records (EMR), Clinical Trial Management Systems (CTMS), Tumor Registries, Biospecimen Repositories, Radiology and Pathology archives and next-generation sequencing devices integrate to support advancement in precision medicine, data-mining, clinical outcome assessment and drug discovery. 

Also, a parallel research effort in Dr. Foran's laboratory is to study an emerging field of research known as "radiomics." The discipline is aiming at extracting large amount of quantitative features from medical images (computed tomography [CT], magnetic resonance [MR], positron emission tomography [PET], or ultrasound images) using data-characterization algorithms that would determine the likelihood of an individual to benefit from a particular therapy. 

Detailed description of individual projects can be found at:


PI Background

David J. Foran, PhDDavid J. Foran, PhD, joined the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey in 2002 and is Professor of Pathology, Laboratory Medicine and Radiology; Chief of Medical Informatics at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School; and Chief Informatics Officer and Director of Biomedical Informatics and Computational Imaging at Rutgers Cancer Institute. 

Because of his wide-reaching work on bioinformatics, computational imaging, and integrative diagnostics, Dr. Foran functioned as a charter member on the Biomedical Computing and Health Informatics (BCHI) study section at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). While serving as a consultant to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2014, he also became a standing member for the Biodata Management and Analysis (BDMA) Study Section for the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering at NIH. 

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  • Computational Imaging
  • Clinical and Research Information Technology (IT)
  • Chemical Informatics and Drug Discovery
  • Bioinformatics and Systems Biology

Dr. Foran has been a session chair and an invited speaker for many national and international conferences. He currently serves as an Associate Editor for the Journal on Cancer Informatics; as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Pathology Informatics; and as a reviewer for the American Medical Informatics Association; BMC Cancer; Archives in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine; the IEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine; and the IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging.









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