Demystifying deep learning: An accessible introduction to neural networks in health research and epidemiology

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As machine learning and deep learning technologies advance thanks to advances in computation, algorithms and data availability, the possibilities of the technology continue to expand in medicine. While these AI-driven approaches have real potential, such systems demand large volumes of representative data, careful privacy and security scrutiny and thoughtful long-term strategic planning. In this Q&A, Kathryn Rough, associate director of the Center for Advanced Evidence Generation at IQVIA, discusses the impact of deep learning on healthcare delivery and recommends steps to take during the design, training, evaluation and deployment phases to increase the likelihood that these models will be safe, effective and ethical when trained on real-world health data. Rough also explores the role of epidemiologists in evaluating these technologies as part of multidisciplinary teams and provides advice for health…
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Understanding medtech AI with alpacas, llamas and Hologic VP of R&D/Innovation Mike Quick

The difference between llamas and alpacas is a great way to talk about medtech AI, Hologic VP of R&D/Innovation Mike Quick says. [Photo by linaskk via]

When Hologic VP of R&D/Innovation Mike Quick talks about artificial intelligence and medtech AI, he draws on his personal experience as an amateur alpaca farmer.

He and his wife had a herd of nearly a dozen alpaca when they lived in the Boston area. Then they moved to Arizona, where they now have three alpaca on a small farm in Phoenix.

“They’re a lot of fun,” he said in an interview with Medical Design & Outsourcing. “… The difference between llamas and alpacas — because it’s a common misconception of what they are — is a great way to talk about AI and the difference between machine learning and deep learning and how to learn to tell two different things apart.”

You start with t…

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How Medtronic’s using AI: Artificial intelligence insights and advice from the C-suite

Dr. Salomón Zebede prepares to operate using Medtronic’s Hugo robotic-assisted surgery system at Pacifica Salud Hospital in Panama. The hospital also uses Medtronic’s AI-powered Touch Surgery Enterprise product. [Photo courtesy of Medtronic]

Medtronic AI products are catching colon cancer, assisting surgeons and finding new uses across the varying technologies developed by the world’s largest medical device manufacturer.

In recent interviews, Medtronic executives discussed how artificial intelligence is leading to new or improved devices. They also offered insights that can help device designers and engineers across the medtech industry take advantage of the rapidly advancing technology.

“We’re harnessing the power of AI today for use in clinical decision support, creating new indications, and delivering personalized treatments,” Medtronic Chair and CEO Geoff Martha sa…

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AI basics from Medtronic Chief Technology and Innovation Officer Ken Washington

Medtronic SVP and Chief Technology and Innovation Officer Ken Washington [Photo courtesy of Medtronic]

Medtronic SVP and Chief Technology and Innovation Officer Ken Washington was recently briefing the 15 general managers who run each of the operating units at the world’s largest medical device manufacturer.

In the middle of the first chart in his presentation on artificial intelligence, one of the leaders stopped him.

As Washington tells it, they said, “I just don’t understand all these different buzzwords around AI. Can you tell me what are the different types of AI? How does it all work? And what’s the difference between generative AI and deep learning?”

Washington — who joined Medtronic in June 2023 after serving as VP and GM of consumer robotics at Amazon and CTO at Ford Motor Co. before that — pulled out an easel, grabbed a marker, and walked the group through t…

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GE Healthcare picks AI imaging startups for inaugural Edison Accelerator

GE Healthcare has selected seven companies to test their AI imaging technologies with GE’s Edison Digital Health Platform. [Image courtesy of GE Healthcare]

GE Healthcare and Nex Cubed have selected seven companies focused on artificial-intelligence-augmented medical imaging for the first cohort of the Edison Accelerator in Canada.

The companies will be matched with mentors and test their technologies with GE’s new Edison Digital Health Platform over the next three months. The program will end with innovation showcase presentations to potential investors and customers, and some startups could have their products distributed through the GE Healthcare Marketplace.

The cohort’s six startups are:

16 Bit, a physician-founded startup that uses routine chest, spine, pelvis, knee or hand x-rays with computer-aided detection and notification software for low bone mineral density prescreenin…
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Hologic and Google Cloud team up on digital diagnostics for cervical cancer

Hologic (NSDQ:HOLX) has entered into a multi-year deal to use Google Cloud’s machine learning and deep learning technologies with its Genius digital diagnostics system, a cytology platform that uses volumetric imaging data to identify precancerous lesions and cancer cells of the cervix.

The machine learning and deep learning capabilities from Google Cloud will enable Hologic to build on its more than three decades of experience in cervical cancer screening, according to Kevin Thornal, president of Hologic’s Diagnostic Solutions division. “Enhancing our use of AI with Google Cloud’s machine learning capabilities and cloud architecture is the next natural step in this journey forward,” he said in a statement.

Genius Digital Diagnostics is CE-marked for use in Europe. It is not yet available in the U.S.

The FDA is currently overhauling how it regulates machine learning-based software for medical device applications.

In related news, Hologic recently …

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