MIT J-Clinic tackling cancer, Alzheimer’s with funding for AI technologies that aim to detect and prevent diseases

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May 1, 2019
  • MIT faculty and principal investigators are embarking on projects that will use the power of machine learning for the prevention, detection, and treatment of disease
  • J-Clinic is the fourth major collaborative effort between MIT and Community Jameel

CAMBRIDGE, MA – May 1, 2019: The Abdul Latif Jameel Clinic for Machine Learning in Health, or J-Clinic, has developed AI technologies to optimise early detection and prevention of ailments including cancer, epilepsy, mental health, cognitive impairment, and congestive heart failure.

Launched this fall, J-Clinic is the fourth major collaborative effort between Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Community Jameel.  J-Clinic aims to create high-precision, affordable, and scalable machine learning technologies in areas of health care ranging from diagnostics to pharmaceuticals.

“We were impressed by the depth, creativity, and scope of the proposals we received,” says Anantha P. Chandrakasan, dean of the MIT School of Engineering and the Vannevar Bush Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, who chairs J-Clinic.

“We are excited to be taking this important step with the inaugural round of MIT J-Clinic research funding,” said Fady Jameel, President, International, Community Jameel. “Through the research funded by these grants, MIT J-Clinic is harnessing the power of machine learning and taking the fight to cancer, Alzheimer’s, and other diseases that affect the lives of people around the world.”

The projects involve principal investigators from departments and labs within engineering, architecture and planning, science, and management. J-Clinic received a total of 43 proposals.

As well as early detection and prevention of diseases, the funded projects include repurposing existing drugs and optimising electronic health records. In addition, a grant funded by J-Clinic in collaboration with the MIT Deshpande Centre for Technological Innovation will support AI-focused research into the rapid diagnosis of bacterial infection.

The technologies and solutions will be applied to numerous healthcare systems and clinical settings around the globe, in developed and developing countries alike, to prevent and detect disease regardless of resources.

J-Clinic’s three main areas of focus are:

Preventative medicine methods and technologies with the potential to change the course of non-infectious disease by stopping it in its tracks.

Cost-effective diagnostic tests that may be able to both detect and alleviate health problems.

Drug discovery and development to enable faster and cheaper discovery, development, and manufacture of new pharmaceuticals, particularly those targeted for individually customised therapies.

J-Clinic’s holistic approach utilises MIT’s strong expertise in cellular and medical biology, computer science, engineering, and the social sciences, amongst other areas.

J-Clinic leverages MIT’s strong relationship with industry and Boston-area hospitals to test, integrate, and deploy new technologies. It seeks to advance patentable research that can be commercialised and spun-out through licensing to start-ups and pharmaceutical companies, putting these advances into real-life practice.

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