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Revolutionizing Precision Medicine: AI-Based Epigenetic Insight by LiU Researchers

Mika Gustafsson and David Martínez hope that AI-based models could eventually be used in precision medicine to develop treatments and preventive strategies tailored to the individual.Photo: Thor Balkhed

Researchers at Linköping University (LiU) have taken a monumental step in the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) and precision medicine. By employing AI neural network models, the team at LiU has been able to decode complex epigenetic patterns from over 75,000 human samples. For the uninitiated, epigenetics revolves around gene activity regulation, much like a switch, without altering the genes themselves.

A groundbreaking test showcased the model's potential. Existing models already pinpoint epigenetic changes brought about by smoking. The LiU model, however, showcased superior accuracy in not just detecting a person's smoking status but also in estimating chronological age and diagnosing systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). What's more, the LiU model pinpointed previously unknown markers, highlighting its capability in recognizing newer patterns.

Guided by Mika Gustafsson, the team's focus on developing interpretable AI ensures a transparent understanding of the model's workings. By bridging AI and biology, LiU's innovative research promises tailored treatments and an enriched understanding of various conditions.

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