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IBM’s Watson: The AI System Which Detected Rare Leukemia in a Woman

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Posted August 10, 2016

We know that IBM’s Watson which is a supercomputer created in 2011 and named after the first CEO of IBM and industrialist – Thomas J. Watson, has won the Jeopardy challenge to the 74 times consecutive winner Ken Jennings and cooked an exotic meal. But many of us may not know that Watson has diagnosed a woman in Japan suffering from Leukemia which the doctors cannot detected. The doctors of University of Tokyo’s Institute of Medical Science, Japan were left confounded when she was not responding to the treatment after diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.

Then the AI system of Watson fed the woman who was 60-years old’s genetic information and made about 20 million clinical oncology studies. Not more than ten minutes, Watson pointed a different form of Leukemia and recommended another treatment, which was resulted successful!

“Watson’s solid detection and treatment solution to this is a proof that the AI is really changing the world”, said by professor Satoru Miyano who was involved in the case. The chairman of the Japanese Society for Artificial Intelligence and member of the National Institute of Informatics, Seiji Yamada added that, “This is the first time in the history of the nation when an AI system has saved a human life”. He also said that, “In the field of the medical and health care, this is the most practical application for the Artificial Intelligence.”

Hence, the medical team of the University of Tokyo’s Institute of Medical Science decided to continue the using of the Watson system. Still it seems to be a long while before IBM’s Watson and other Artificial Intelligence systems provide regularly advice to the hospitals. The diagnosis of Leukemia just shown that how useful the AI technology could be in the medical field to plug in the right data and providing the right treatment.

Not only the medical science that IBM’s Watson has vanquished. It is a cognitive computer system trying to imitate the working of a human brain through self-learning. It mines a vast amount of data, recognizes the pattern and processes the language. Consequently, it produces results quicker than a human can provide on his own. The ultimate goal of the Watson AI system is to provide solutions to the problems without having any human interaction.

For some minor illnesses which are not having in depth studies, it is difficult to provide a body for clinical studies, which is needed for detecting such rare illnesses by Watson AI system. It is needed to examine such body by Watson to compare it with a patient’s medical condition to detect the symptoms and providing the solution. Not only this, the AI systems needs a big amount of DNA repositories. This creates serious issues around privacy and security of such data.

Currently, in the United States, the AI systems are already in use of supporting the treatment of brain tumors and leukemia. However, saying for this particular case, it is surely a real big and bold step into the age of AI (Artificial Intelligence).

Written by Mandip Pandya, Best On Internet.

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