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:Uploaded on Thursday 20th Oct 2016

Artificial Intelligence system to help assist Doctors to diagnose rare diseases

Intelligence exhibited by machines can be simply referred to as Artificial intelligence (AI). An ideal "intelligent" machine should be able to perceive its environment and take actions that maximize its chance of success at some defined goal. Colloquially, the term "artificial intelligence" is applied when a machine mimics "cognitive" functions that humans associate with other human minds, such as "learning" and "problem solving". As machines become increasingly capable, they are being employed in various fields of which Medical field gives broader scope for them.

The central problems (or goals) of AI research include reasoning, knowledge, planning, learning, natural language processing (communication), perception and the ability to move and manipulate objects. General intelligence is among the field's long-term goals. Approaches include statistical methods, computational intelligence, soft computing (e.g.machine learning), and traditional symbolic AI. Many tools are used in AI, including versions of search and mathematical optimization, logic, methods based on probability and economics. The AI field draws upon computer science, mathematics, psychology, linguistics, philosophy, neuroscience and artificial psychology.

Use of Artificial Intelligence in Disease diagnosis

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IBM has done lot of research in the field of Artificial Intelligence. IBM's artificial intelligence platform Watson is amazing example. Now IBM has tied up with Doctors to make use of AI in the field of diagnosis of the rare diseases. IBM's Watson-the super computer will work with doctors in attempting to solve some complex medical cases. Doctors of Germany have associated with Watson. Watson will be based at the Undiagnosed and Rare Diseases Centre at the University Hospital in Marburg.

So far, Watson has looked at half a dozen cases, but it is unclear how many it has correctly diagnosed. Now Days AI systems are increasingly being used in healthcare, with Google's DeepMind partnering several UK hospitals. IBM's artificial intelligence platform Watson will work with doctors in Germany attempting to solve some complex medical cases.

As we know, IBM's supercomputer Watson has been used to make decisions about cancer care in hospitals in the US and Canada. Use of computers to trawl through vast amounts of medical data, can speed up the diagnosis process. The Watson system will help assess individual tumors and suggest which drug should be used to target them. Doctors have welcomed the new computer which will learn from each case it examines.

Translating cancer-sequencing results into potential treatment options often takes weeks with a team of experts to study just one patient's tumour and provide results to guide treatment decisions but use of Super-computer such as Watson appears to help dramatically reduce that timeline.

Usually at hospitals, the patients who arrive often have very long medical histories and may have been seen by lot of physicians who have failed to diagnose them. The patients will have thousands of medical documents, leaving Doctors overwhelmed not only by the large number of patients, but also by the huge amount of data they have to review. In this situation a Super computer can read the patients' medical files alongside vast amounts of medical literature to offer a series of ranked diagnoses.

Most people currently diagnosed with cancer will receive surgery, chemotherapy or radiation treatment. But as genetic sequencing becomes increasingly accessible and affordable, some patients are starting to benefit from treatments that target their specific cancer-causing genetic mutations. However the process is very time-consuming - a single patient's genome represents more than 100 gigabytes of data - and this needs to be combined with other medical records, journal studies and information about clinical trials. Thus it would take a clinician weeks together to analyse but it can be completed by a Super computer like Watson in only a few minutes.

"The technology that we're applying to this challenge brings the power of cognitive computing to bear on one of the most urgent and pressing issues of our time - the fight against cancer - in a way that has never before been possible," explained Steve Harvey, vice president of IBM Watson Health.

Apple has revealed that it plans to develop apps for its iPhone that will allow users to take DNA tests which may reveal which diseases and health conditions they are likely to develop.
Thus Artificial Intelligence is now a part of our daily lives. It's on our wrists in the form of Apple's SIRI and in our kitchens thanks to Amazon's Alexa. We use it, but do not always understand or trust it.


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