AURAK Researcher Co-Pilots AI-based Study that Unlocks New Insights into Brain Tumor Treatment

25 March 2024

AURAK’s Dr. Rawad Hodeify and Dr. Orwa Aboud of University of California, Davis, USA, pioneer revolutionary and potential non-surgical AI-based diagnostic model

A pioneering study co-led by a Sigma Xi researcher from the American University of Ras Al Khaimah (AURAK) promises to revolutionize brain tumor care using AI-based tools.

The study is led by Dr. Rawad Hodeify, Department Chair, Associate Professor of Medical Biotechnology, AURAK, and Dr. Orwa Aboud, Assistant Professor, Department of Neurology and Neurological Surgery, University of California, Davis, USA.

The research promises to revolutionize the ways we diagnose and monitor Glioblastoma, a highly aggressive form of brain cancer, which presents daunting challenges for treatment and diagnosis. Traditional follow-up methods, primarily brain imaging, often fall short in detecting the cancer in its early stages or provide inaccurate results.

Dr. Hodeify’s research hinges on examining tiny compounds in the blood (metabolites) and employing mass spectrometry to analyze the type and quantity of these molecules in patient samples.

Dr. Hodeify explains: “AI is providing unprecedented tools to take brain tumor diagnosis and treatment to a new level. In our research we identified significant changes in metabolites associated with different treatment stages. Leveraging the power of AI, we have devised a new method to analyze data, creating a valuable guide for tumor diagnosis and treatment response. This cutting-edge technology promises to revolutionize brain tumor care.”

Hailing Dr. Hodeify’s work, Prof. Stephen Wilhite, AURAK’s Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Student Success / Provost, said: “The research done by Dr. Hodeify and his team is bound to have tremendous impact on treatment of brain tumor globally. This type of research is in line with the AURAK vision of excelling in research projects that impact today’s problems, including medical conditions. Our biotechnology program is a classic example of how the university is nurturing innovators of the future.”

Dr. Hodeify’s paper has been published in the special issue on Artificial Intelligence in Cancer Metabolism and Metabolomics in the international, peer-reviewed journal, Metabolites. The full text article entitled ‘Application of Machine Learning to Metabolomic Profile Characterization in Glioblastoma Patients Undergoing Concurrent Chemoradiation’ is available on  PubMed Central®, an archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health’s National Library of Medicine. (

The study examined 105 plasma specimens from 36 glioblastoma patients undergoing standard therapy. This innovative research represents a significant advancement in general understanding of glioblastoma progression and treatment response, demonstrating the potential of AI-driven metabolomic analysis to revolutionize brain cancer care. By unravelling the molecular complexities of glioblastoma, Dr. Hodeify and his team’s work holds promise for the development of targeted interventions, bringing hope to patients and offering prospects for improved outcomes and enhanced quality of life.

Dr. Rawad Hodeify is an elected member of Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Honor Society. Sigma Xi is the world’s largest general research honor society. It is an international, multidisciplinary organization for research scientists and engineers. Over the course of the Society’s distinguished history, more than 200 members have won the Nobel Prize and many more have earned election to the National Academy of Sciences and National Academy of Engineering.

AURAK runs a comprehensive four-year undergraduate program covering diverse areas of Biotechnology, such as Molecular and Cellular Biology, Genetics, Microbiology, Drug Discovery, Medical Biotechnology, Forensics, and Food and Agricultural Sciences. The program is accredited by the Applied and Natural Science Accreditation Commission (ANSAC) of the prestigious Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).

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