Mayo Clinic will pilot IBM Watson to match patients more quickly with appropriate clinical trials.
A proof-of-concept phase is currently underway, with the intent to introduce it into clinical use in early 2015, said IBM.
“Watson assists us to develop an individualized treatment plan more efficiently to deliver exactly the care that the patient needs,” said Steven Alberts, chair of medical oncology at Mayo Clinic.
Watson’s cognitive computing ability will assist Mayo Clinic that conducts over 8,000 human studies in addition to the 170,000 that are ongoing worldwide to sift through available Mayo clinical trials and ensure that more patients are accurately and consistently matched with promising clinical trial options.
This version of Watson will be especially designed for Mayo Clinic.
Mayo hopes to raise clinical trial involvement to include up to 10 percent of its patients. Higher participation may improve the quality of research outcomes.
“Using Watson’s cognitive computing capabilities, Mayo Clinic can consistently offer more cutting-edge medical options to patients and conclude trials faster. This effort will also help advance scientific discoveries into promising new forms of care that clinicians can use to treat all patients,” said Mike Rhodin, senior vice president, IBM Watson Group.
Mayo is working with IBM to expand Watson’s corpus of knowledge to include all clinical trials at Mayo Clinic and in public databases, such as ClinicalTrials.gov.
The new Watson system is being trained to analyze patient records and clinical trial criteria in order to determine appropriate matches for patients.