Individuals create and consume more diverse data about themselves today than any time in history. Sources of this data include wearable devices, images, social media, geospatial information and more. A tremendous opportunity rests within cross-modal data analysis that leverages existing domain knowledge methods to understand and guide human health. Especially in chronic diseases, current medical practice uses a combination of sparse hospital based biological metrics (blood tests, expensive imaging, etc.) to understand the evolving health status of an individual. Future health systems must integrate data created at the individual level to better understand health status perpetually, especially in a cybernetic framework. In this work we fuse multiple user created and open source data streams along with established biomedical domain knowledge to give two types of quantitative state estimates of cardiovascular health. First, we use wearable devices to calculate cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF), a known quantitative leading predictor of heart disease which is not routinely collected in clinical settings. Second, we estimate inherent genetic traits, living environmental risks, circadian rhythm, and biological metrics from a diverse dataset. Our experimental results on 24 subjects demonstrate how multi-modal data can provide personalized health insight. Understanding the dynamic nature of health status will pave the way for better health based recommendation engines, better clinical decision making and positive lifestyle changes.
In the modern healthcare system, rapidly expanding costs/complexity, the growing myriad of treatment options, and exploding information streams that often do not effectively reach the front lines hinder the ability to choose optimal treatment decisions over time. The goal in this paper is to develop a general purpose (non-disease-specific) computational/artificial intelligence (AI) framework to address these challenges. This serves two potential functions: 1) a simulation environment for exploring various healthcare policies, payment methodologies, etc., and 2) the basis for clinical artificial intelligence - an AI that can think like a doctor. This approach combines Markov decision processes and dynamic decision networks to learn from clinical data and develop complex plans via simulation of alternative sequential decision paths while capturing the sometimes conflicting, sometimes synergistic interactions of various components in the healthcare system. It can operate in partially observable environments (in the case of missing observations or data) by maintaining belief states about patient health status and functions as an online agent that plans and re-plans. This framework was evaluated using real patient data from an electronic health record. Such an AI framework easily outperforms the current treatment-as-usual (TAU) case-rate/fee-for-service models of healthcare (Cost per Unit Change: $189 vs. $497) while obtaining a 30-35% increase in patient outcomes. Tweaking certain model parameters further enhances this advantage, obtaining roughly 50% more improvement for roughly half the costs. Given careful design and problem formulation, an AI simulation framework can approximate optimal decisions even in complex and uncertain environments. Future work is described that outlines potential lines of research and integration of machine learning algorithms for personalized medicine.
What exactly is biotechnology, and how could it change our approach to human health? As the age of big data transforms the potential of this emerging field, members of the World Economic Forum's Global Future Council on Biotechnology tell you everything you need to know. What if your doctor could predict your heart attack before you had it – and prevent it? Or what if we could cure a child's cancer by exploiting the bacteria in their gut? These types of biotechnology solutions aimed at improving human health are already being explored. As more and more data (so called "big data") is available across disparate domains such as electronic health records, genomics, metabolomics, and even life-style information, further insights and opportunities for biotechnology will become apparent. However, to achieve the maximal potential both technical and ethical issues will need to be addressed. As we look to the future, let's first revisit previous examples of where combining data with scientific understanding has led to new health solutions. Biotechnology is a rapidly changing field that continues to transform both in scope and impact. Karl Ereky first coined the term biotechnology in 1919.
In the past several years, we have taken advantage of a number of opportunities to advance the intersection of next generation high-performance computing AI and big data technologies through partnerships in precision medicine. Today we are in the throes of piecing together what is likely the most unique convergence of medical data and computer technologies. But more deeply, we observe that the traditional paradigm of computer simulation and prediction needs fundamental revision. This is the time for a number of reasons. We will review what the drivers are, why now, how this has been approached over the past several years, and where we are heading.
In this article we provide insight into the BodyMedia FIT armband system — a wearable multi-sensor technology that continuously monitors physiological events related to energy expenditure for weight management using machine learning and data modeling methods. Since becoming commercially available in 2001, more than half a million users have used the system to track their physiological parameters and to achieve their individual health goals including weight-loss. We describe several challenges that arise in applying machine learning techniques to the health care domain and present various solutions utilized in the armband system. We demonstrate how machine learning and multi-sensor data fusion techniques are critical to the system’s success.