How long do you think you’ll live? Your answer is probably between 70 and 100 years old. What if I told you that with AI, we can significantly increase that number? By using AI in the drug discovery process and in emergency healthcare, we could live way beyond the age constraints that we have on us now.
Speeding Up Drug Discovery
AI can allow us to discover more efficient and effective drugs faster, leading to a longer life xpectancy. An example of a company currently working on speeding up the drug discovery process using AI is Insilico Medicine. They’re using Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) to identify molecules that could be used in new drugs. GANs are a type of neural network that puts two neural networks against each other. In the case of Insilico Medicine, one of the neural networks are trained using a data set, and the other creates new molecules that could work as new drugs. When it comes up with a new molecule, the trained neural network evaluates the output based on its knowledge, and then the molecule is finalized for further development. Using this method, we’re able to speed up the drug discovery process, and get drugs to the market faster!
Improving Emergency Care
Not only does AI aid the development of drugs, but it can also enhance emergency and preventative care in hospitals and clinics around the world. SickKids Hospital in Toronto, Canada is a leading children’s hospital that has been collecting patient data from heart monitors in their pediatric intensive-care unit since 2013. Using the more than two trillion data points they have collected, researchers at SickKids are developing an AI model that can predict cardiac arrest before it happens. The model takes into account the patient’s individual medical history and current condition to make its prediction. Currently, it can predict 70% of cardiac arrests 5 minutes before the heart stops beating. This five minutes of lead time could be used by medical staff to prepare for the arrest, or make an intervention to prevent it when possible.
Analyzing Gene Variants
The future is unknown to us, but what if it didn’t have to be that way when it comes to our health? Genes are the blueprints that determine our life. Humans are mostly the same when it comes to the genes we have, but there are still differences that make us unique. These differences are called gene variants, and they can impact us in different ways. A gene variant can be the reason someone gets a certain disease. Analyzing gene variants can provide us with a treasure trove of information regarding a person’s health, but doing it manually can take ages. As a result, genomics companies like 23andMe have turned to AI to provide a solution to this problem. 23andMe used a machine learning (ML) model to find patterns in a large set of genetic data, and then the patterns were turned into computer models to provide predictions as to how someone’s genes may impact their weight. Using a similar model, we can understand which health conditions may affect someone in the future. If the disease is preventable, individuals can consult medical professionals to implement lifestyle changes or other interventions for prevention.
- AI is fueling innovations that have the potential to significantly lengthen our lifespan
- AI can allow us to bring new drugs to market faster
- AI is improving emergency care by providing healthcare professionals with unique insights about a patient’s condition
- AI can be used to help us plan for the future by analyzing our gene variants using ML models
All in all, AI has the power to help us increase our time on this planet, whether it be through drug discovery, the improvement of emergency healthcare, or disease prediction. What do you think about the intersection of AI and longevity? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts!