Pigeons as Anatomic Pathologists? Researchers at University of Iowa and UC Davis Train Pigeons to Identify Cancerous Cells from Healthy Cells in Human Breast Tissue

Studies at the two universities produced intriguing insights into the ability of pigeons to discriminate between benign and malignant breast cancer slides at all magnifications

Researchers at the University of Iowa and the University of California Davis (UC Davis) are reporting intriguing results from a study indicating that pigeons have the potential to be “proficient pathologists” when it comes to telling the difference between healthy and cancerous cells in human breast tissue.

With minimal training and food reinforcement, the common pigeon or rock dove, performed as well as humans at identifying and classifying (AKA, pigeonholing) digitized slides and mammograms of benign and malignant human breast tissue, stated the researchers. (more…)