Clinical OMICS

MAY-JUN 2018

Healthcare magazine for research scientists, labs, pathologists, hospitals, cancer centers, physicians and biopharma companies providing news articles, expert interviews and videos about molecular diagnostics in precision medicine

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Page 45 of 51

Precision Medicine 44 Clinical OMICs May/June 2018 M achine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) are prominent buzzwords when the topic of preci- sion medicine comes up, but like many emerging technologies with the poten- tial to make a significant impact, it can be difficult sometimes to separate the hype from the real-world impact. AI entered that breathless, over- hyped territory last year, and luckily there have been some in the life sci- ences and healthcare who have cau- tioned against over-promising on the potential. "There is so much hype and noise about the predictive power of the AI," said Ahmed Ghoury, CEO of clinical and genomic data interpreta- tion company Interpreta. "This satura- tion of AI claims can make people sour on the field as a whole, so it is good to vet the accuracy of claims and ask organizations if they have any data that can validate their claims." In addition, AI still suffers from the fear of the "black box"—the algo- rithms that are grinding the data fed into them to generate answers or diagnoses, or advice on how to treat patients. "If [AI] is drawing conclu- sions and you don't know what the underlying datasets are, that is what physicians will most react to. If they can't understand how it arrived at that answer, they can't trust it," noted Chris Cournoyer, CEO of molecular decision support company N-of-One. "And trust is a big thing with AI right now." Pharmacogenomics While care organizations that are look- ing to technology to help provide pre- cision care are right to cast a critical eye toward AI, that doesn't mean it is not making contributions today in the clinical setting—and is poised for even greater influence in the future. Pharmacogenomics is one area where AI-enabled technologies are making a noticeable impact today. Companies like Interpreta are lever- aging data from the FDA's Adverse Event Reporting System and combin- ing it with clinical data and insurance data to help doctors make more pre- cise prescription choices and head off adverse drug events (ADEs). "Right now most of the drug label- ing for genomics tends to be focused on one-dimensional drug-to-gene interactions," said Ghoury. But the reality of drug prescribing is much more complex than one drug to one specific genetic variant. "If you look at patient's renal function, or if they have a heart murmur, the risk of an ADE goes way up. So we are using the FDA [data] as a baseline, but then we are Ready for Prime Time? AI Influencing Precision Medicine but May Not Match the Hype By Chris Anderson Interpreta Founder and President Raghu Sugavanam and CEO Ahmed Choury

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