From pixels to phenotypes: Integrating image-based profiling with cell health data as BioMorph features improves interpretability

Cell Painting assays generate morphological profiles that are versatile descriptors of biological systems and have been used to predict in vitro and in vivo drug effects. However, Cell Painting features extracted from classical software such as CellProfiler are based on statistical calculations and often not readily biologically interpretable. In this study, we propose a new feature space, which we call BioMorph, that maps these Cell Painting features with readouts from comprehensive Cell Health assays. … Overall, BioMorph space offers a biologically relevant way to interpret the cell morphological features derived using software such as CellProfiler and to generate hypotheses for experimental validation.

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