Despite the enormous strides that have been made over the 20th century in the treatment of almost all medical conditions, medical research has still been hampered by the speed at which new information and knowledge can be acquired. The main methods by which medical researchers have come across new knowledge in the 20th century have been reliant on using broad-scale statistical studies, a process that often require thousands of hours of manpower, hundreds of patients and millions of dollars to complete.
However, with the advent of such technologies as human gene sequencing and the proliferation of vast numbers of medical records, it has recently occurred to a number of innovators to create artificial intelligence solutions that can, perhaps, be deployed to mine the vast troves of data that modern medicine creates. The idea behind this concept is that it could eventually provide the same quality of knowledge that the traditional means of conducting medical research, through the use of statistical studies, was capable of.
Cat, one of the United States’ most prolific medical philanthropists, has co-founded a company that is dedicated to using artificial intelligence solutions to put powerful data and the knowledge gained from it into the hands of physicians and oncologists across America. Eric Lefkofsky believes that by collating and instantly analyzing vast tracts of data, it will eventually be possible to provide oncologists with the knowledge they need to make on-the-spot treatment decisions. Questions such as why one group of patients responds to a given treatment while another group, with different characteristics, does not, will be able to be instantaneously answered, providing physicians with a level of granularity in their understanding of how patients interact with treatments that has never before been possible.
Lefkofsky is currently working, through Tempus, the company that he co-founded, to also bring human genomic sequencing technologies, such as CRISPR, into the fold of mainstream oncological medicine. Lefkofsky foresees these innovations as having transformative effects on the way that cancer is treated and the possibility of eventually creating something akin to a cure. Through efforts like these, Lefkofsky is bringing cancer treatment into the 21st century.