Martine Rothblatt, futurist and founder of Sirius XM, says by the time her biotech company's genetically modified transplant organs are in use, drones will likely deliver them. Rothblatt gave her view of the future at The Washington Post's Transformers conference Wednesday. Her United Therapeutics company, which has offices is Silver Spring, Md. and Research Triangle Park, N.C., is raising pigs with genome modifications its researchers hope will improve the animals' organs for transplant recipients. Pigs organs, because of their size and function, make good transplant material, but often the patient is trading their current disease for "a chronic organ rejection kind-of-disease that ultimately takes the life of many, if not most, people who receive transplants," she said. The company hopes to begin trials on organ transplants from genetically-modified pigs by the end of the decade, with regulatory approval ten years from now, Rothblatt said.
Teen scientists use machine learning and neural networks to detect and diagnose diseases, track space debris, design drones and justify conclusions at Intel ISEF 2017. While sentient computer beings like HAL from the classic 2001: A Space Odyssey or Samantha from the 2013 film Her may still be on the distant horizon, some forms of artificial intelligence (AI) are already improving lives. At the 2017 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) – where nearly 1,800 high school students gathered to present original research and compete for more than $4 million in prizes – the next generation of scientists used machine learning and artificial neural networks to find solutions to some of today's most vexing problems. "AI is critical to our future," said Christopher Kang, a budding computer scientist from Richland, Washington, who won an ISEF award in the robotics and intelligent machines category. "Humans have a limit as to how much data we can analyze," he said.
The selection of the Reno-based drone operator Flirtey and its local partners for a national test program aimed at increasing the use of unmanned aircraft will be a "game-changer" for the delivery of emergency medical supplies in the region, backers of the effort say. The 10 sites the U.S. Department of Transportation announced Wednesday include projects ranging from monitoring crops and oil pipelines in North Dakota to applying mosquito-killing treatments in Florida. In northern Nevada, the focus will be on drugs and medical equipment. Flirtey drones already have delivered automated external defibrillators used to jumpstart the hearts of cardiac arrest victims as part of a joint emergency program with first-responders in Reno. The company also anticipates future deliveries of EpiPens to treat severe allergic reactions and Narcan for opioid overdoses.
Flirtey drones already have delivered automated external defibrillators used to jumpstart the hearts of cardiac arrest victims as part of a joint emergency program with first-responders in Reno. The company also anticipates future deliveries of EpiPens for severe allergic reactions and Narcan for opioid overdoses.
The UK government is to fund a trial of drone-based deliveries of blood and other medical supplies in Tanzania. The goal is to radically reduce the amount of time it takes to send stock to health clinics in the African nation by road or other means. The scheme involves Zipline, a Silicon Valley start-up that began running a similar service in Rwanda in October. Experts praised that initiative but cautioned that "cargo drones" are still of limited use to humanitarian bodies. The Department for International Development (Dfid) has not said how much money will be invested in the Tanzanian effort or for how long.