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IBM Partners With Baheal Group to Bring Watson for Oncology to China

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IBM today announced that Baheal Pharmaceutical Group is extending the reach of Watson for Oncology to clinicians across China through a new multi-year strategic alliance.

As the primary channel partner for Watson for Oncology in China, Baheal will serve a key role in not only accelerating cancer patients’ access to cognitive technology, but over time, may also partner to bring Watson for Genomics and other future Watson Health innovation to China.

Baheal has a proven track record delivering value to hospitals across China working with more than 12,000 hospitals today, and the company has already implemented Watson for Oncology at Qingdao University Affiliate Hospital and Qingdao City Hospital, impacting more than 350 patients to-date.

IBM Watson Health is actively partnering with organizations like Baheal within China’s healthcare and technology community to establish an ecosystem that will bring the benefits of machine learning into clinical practice to serve the needs of doctors and patients while maintaining compliance with local laws and regulations, including data privacy and security requirements.

“Oncologists in China have very little time to spend with each of their patients, and by deploying Watson for Oncology across our network, we aim to give our doctors more time to focus on the best decisions they can make for their patients,” said Gang Fu, Chairman, Baheal Pharmaceutical Group. “Watson for Oncology will complement the robust digital health program that Baheal has already implemented in an effort to improve efficiency and quality across China’s healthcare system.” 

Watson for Oncology is a cognitive computing platform that was trained by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York to provide evidence-based treatment options to oncologists. It identifies individualized treatment options, scales access to oncology expertise, and analyzes massive volumes of medical literature drawing from more than 300 medical journals, 200 textbooks and nearly 15 million pages of text.  

Watson also ranks evidence-based treatment options, linking to peer reviewed studies and clinical guidelines. Its machine-learning capability means it continuously learns, gaining in value and knowledge over time. Watson for Oncology is currently trained to assist clinicians in developing treatment plans for breast, lung, colorectal, cervical, ovarian, gastric and prostate cancers.

You can learn more about IBM Watson Health here.

Written by turbotodd

June 5, 2017 at 9:03 am

IDx and IBM Watson Health Forge Alliance for Eye Health

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IBM Watson Health and IDx,LLC today announced a five-year strategic alliance to advance eye health through cognitive computing applications. 

The alliance aims to help primary care providers, hospitals, health systems, and integrated delivery networks deliver value-based care to patients with diabetic retinopathy and other serious eye conditions such as glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration. 

The alliance expands IBM Watson Health’s focus on eye health.

The alliance leverages more than a decade of IDx’s ophthalmic image analysis work and IBM’s cognitive healthcare offerings and global reach. As part of the alliance, IBM Watson Health has the option to distribute IDx offerings. Initially, IBM Watson Health intends to distribute IDx-DR — an automated solution for diabetic retinopathy screening currently available in the 31 countries that comprise the European Economic Area.

IBM Watson Health may expand its distribution of IDx-DR to Australia, Canada, and the United States upon regulatory approvals of the product.

There are 415 million adults with diabetes across the world today, with the number expected to grow by 50% to over 600 million by 2040. Each of these individuals is at high risk of developing diabetic retinopathy, which is one of the leading causes of preventable blindness in working age adults.

Most people that develop diabetic retinopathy have no symptoms until irreversible vision loss had occurred, making early disease detection critical to prevent blindness.

“Over the past decades, productivity in healthcare has not kept pace with other sectors.  Patients and providers worldwide are paying the price. Our mission at IDx has always been to transform the quality, accessibility, and affordability of global healthcare through the automation of medical screening to support physicians’ diagnoses. We are incredibly pleased to partner with IBM Watson Health, which shares this vision, and believe they will help us scale the IDx mission to its fullest potential,” said Dr. Michael Abramoff, Founder and President of IDx.

This announcement comes shortly after IBM announced that IDx joined the global IBM Watson medical imaging collaborative, which includes 24 members worldwide.

The collaborative has a working group on eye health which aims to accelerate Watson’s understanding of a range of high-impact diseases — such as glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and cardiovascular disease — using various imaging modalities including fundus and optical coherence tomography (OCT).

IDx-DR version 2.0 has CE marking as a Class IIa Medical Device for sale in the European Union. IDx products have not yet been cleared by the FDA and are not currently for sale in the United States. IDx is currently conducting a U.S.-based clinical trial of IDx-DR scheduled for completion this summer. 

Written by turbotodd

March 16, 2017 at 9:22 am

Munich Laboratory Selects IBM Watson For Personalized Leukemia Diagnostics And Treatment

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Munich Leukemia Laboratory (MLL) is a state-of-the-art leukemia and lymphoma diagnostic and research laboratory based in Munich. It recently partnered with IBM and Illumina, Inc., the global leader in next-generation sequencing technology, to help build a new cognitive technology prototype that aims to help researchers improve leukemia treatment.

Leukemia’s prevalance has been on the rise in Europe, with 15,000 new diagnoses each year in Germany alone. MLL will use NovaSeq technology from Illumina to sequence samples from its biobank of more than 500,000 cases.

MLL researchers then plan to use Watson to help analyze the genomic data alongside other data sources. The project intends to include innovative testing processes such as automated phenotyping and genotyping including whole genome sequencing (WGS) and transcriptome sequencing (RNASeq) in 5,000 cases.

The ultimate goal is to develop a Watson-based technology prototype that can help analyze genomic and phenotypic data alongside medical literature, guidelines and study results, providing clinicians with information relevant to leukemia care. Following successful development, the tool could also be made available to other laboratories in the future.

Prof. Torsten Haferlach, co-founder and CEO of MLL, states, “We at MLL are excited to combine our data and knowledge, IBM’s cognitive computing tools, and Illumina’s new sequencing platform to create a new era of insights in leukemia biology that will also drive more personalized treatment strategies.”

MLL will utilize Illumina’s BaseSpace® Informatics Suite to be able to streamline data analysis, storage, data curation and aggregation. The BaseSpace Sequence Hub Frankfurt site will help MLL manage the data as the project scales and facilitates data transfer to IBM Watson. 

Additional tertiary analysis with BaseSpace Cohort Analyzer and BaseSpace Correlation Engine allows MLL’s genomic data to be combined with other clinical data to enhance interpretation results.

Written by turbotodd

March 8, 2017 at 9:12 am

IBM Debuts Watson Clinical Imaging Review

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IBM today introduced IBM Watson Imaging Clinical Review — the first cognitive imaging offering from Watson Health.

It also announced the expansion of the Watson Health medical imaging collaborative to 24 organizations worldwide, adding clinical and industry expertise for the worldwide initiative already tackling eye, brain, breast, heart and related conditions.

The Watson Health medical imaging collaborative is an initiative comprised of leading health systems, academic medical centers, private radiology practices, ambulatory radiology providers, and imaging technology companies that are finding ways to use medical imaging to identify and predict the risk of cancer, diabetes, and diseases of the eye, brain and heart and related conditions.

Watson Health will debut Watson Clinical Imaging Review, the first cognitive imaging offering from IBM. The offering reviews medical data including images to help healthcare providers identify the most critical cases that require attention.

The first application for the offering is cardiovascular disease, starting with a common condition called aortic stenosis (AS). AS, which affects 1.5 million Americans, occurs when the aortic valve in the heart is narrowed, impeding blood flow to the rest of the body and causing shortness of breath, tiredness, and chest pain.

A pilot study found that Watson Clinical Imaging Review was able to help hospital personnel identify potential AS patients who had not been previously flagged for follow up cardiovascular care.

Using Watson Imaging Clinical Review, hospital administrators may identify cases where follow up care is warranted and assure EMR information is complete. It uses cognitive text analytics to read structured and unstructured information in a cardiologist’s medical report, combines that with a variety of data from other sources (e.g. EMR problem list), and extracts relevant information to verify key data, including the diagnosis, is accurately reflected throughout the health record.

“Watson Imaging Clinical Review is the type of targeted AI-driven tool that providers could put to use to help them standardize care delivered across their organization, and gradually build a critical mass of reproducible results from their patient population. In doing so, it can support a population health-driven approach to personalized care,” said Nadim Michel Daher, a medical imaging and informatics analyst for Frost & Sullivan.

“Out of the gate, this type of cognitive tool may provide big benefits to hospitals and doctors, providing insights we don’t currently have and doing so in a way that fits how we work,” said Ricardo C. Cury, M.D., director of Cardiac Imaging at Baptist Health of South Florida and chairman and CEO of Radiology Associates of South Florida.

IBM plans to supplement the release of this offering with nine additional cardiovascular conditions, such as myocardial infarctions (heart attacks), valve disorders, cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle), and deep vein thrombosis.

You can learn more about Watson Health here.

Written by turbotodd

February 20, 2017 at 9:09 am

Jupiter Medical Center Implements Watson for Oncology

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IBM and Jupiter Medical Center today announced that Jupiter will adopt Watson for Oncology trained by Memorial Sloan Kettering, a cognitive computing platform to provide insights to physicians to help them deliver personalized, evidence-based cancer treatment. Jupiter is the first U.S. community hospital to adopt Watson for Oncology, which will go live at the facility in the beginning of March.

Dr. Abraham Schwarzberg, MD, chief of oncology at Jupiter Medical Center in Palm Beach County, Florida, reviews recommendations generated by IBM Watson for Oncology. (Image Courtesy of Jupiter Medical Center)

In the U.S., there will be an estimated 1.7M new cancer cases this year, with 125,000 in Florida alone. As healthcare providers and systems seek to enable data-driven, evidence-based cancer care, an explosion of medical information has created both challenges and opportunities to improve quality care. Currently, approximately 50,000 oncology research papers are published annually, and by 2020 medical information is projected to double every 73 days, outpacing the ability of humans to keep up with the proliferation of medical knowledge.

Watson for Oncology provides information to oncologists to help them deliver evidence-based treatment options by analyzing massive volumes of medical literature to identify individualized treatment options and scaling access to oncology expertise.

Watson for Oncology draws from more than 300 medical journals, more than 200 textbooks, and nearly 15 million pages of text to provide insights about different treatment options and also provides oncologists with information regarding drug options and administration instructions. Watson also ranks the evidence-based treatment options, linking to peer reviewed studies and clinical guidelines. Its machine-learning capability means it continuously learns, gaining in value and knowledge over time.

”At Jupiter Medical Center, we are committed to pioneering new approaches to medicine and health care,” said John D. Couris, President and CEO of Jupiter Medical Center. “Watson for Oncology is part of our significant investment in creating a world-class cancer program and we are proud to be the first U.S. community hospital to arm our clinical team with this cutting-edge technology.”

IBM and MSK have been accelerating Watson for Oncology’s training; Watson for Oncology is now available to assist clinicians in developing treatment plans for breast, lung, colorectal, cervical, ovarian and gastric cancers.

IBM and MSK plan to train Watson on at least 9 additional cancer types this year, covering nearly 80 percent of the worldwide incidence of cancer.

“We were impressed by Watson’s analytical ability to help provide relevant treatment options for patients to allow physicians to personalize patient care in an unparalleled way,” said Abraham Schwarzberg, MD, Chief of Oncology at Jupiter Medical Center. “Harnessing the power of Watson will help our oncology multidisciplinary team identify individual treatments. As one of the first in the country to implement this incredible tool, Jupiter Medical Center continues to be a regional leader in integrating technology to provide cutting-edge clinical care.”

You can learn more about IBM Watson Health here.

Written by turbotodd

February 1, 2017 at 8:42 am

IBM And Illumina Partner On Genomic Data

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IBM Watson Health and Illumina, Inc. have announced a major partnership to expand access to genome data interpretation by integrating Watson for Genomics into Illumina’s BaseSpace®Sequence Hub and tumor sequencing process. The collaboration is designed to help standardize and simplify genomic data interpretation.

By adding Watson for Genomics to Illumina’s next-generation sequencing platform, researchers who use Illumina’s cancer genome sequencing panel will have rapid access to information to help interpret the broad array of variant data produced by TruSight Tumor 170. Illumina’s TruSight® Tumor 170 is a solid tumor profiling panel designed to detect a comprehensive set of variants across 170 genes.

In a matter of minutes, Watson for Genomics will read the genetic alteration files produced by TruSight Tumor 170, comb professional guidelines, medical literature, clinical trials compendia, and other sources of knowledge to provide information for each genomic alteration, and produce a report for use by researchers — a process that typically takes scientists more than one week to complete.

Watson for Genomics ingests data from approximately 10,000 scientific articles and 100 new clinical trials every month. The Watson for Genomics software will be available to support Illumina’s TruSight Tumor 170 assay early in 2017.

Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide and a growing body of research shows that analyzing the genomic basis of a tumor can be important for understanding the individual patient’s disease, a major aspect of precision medicine.

However, the output of next generation sequencing panels requires sophisticated analyses to help identify the mutations responsible for cancer growth and correlate that information with potential standard and experimental treatment options. This is where Watson is expected to help.

“To enable precision cancer medicine on a large scale, we need new tools to overcome the data barriers of genomic research,” said Francis deSouza, President and CEO of Illumina.. “With a comprehensive assay of Illumina and the power of Watson, we hope to deliver a rapid turnaround of the genomic alteration results.”

Genome sequencing has increased in recent years following two decades of research demonstrating the promise of precision medicine. However, access to these advances has been limited by the significant time and expense required to interpret the genomic data.

Written by turbotodd

January 9, 2017 at 9:12 am

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