Pharma Tech Outlook: Pharma Tech Magazine

Deep 6 AI: AI is a Game-changer for Clinical Trial Recruitment

CIO VendorWout Brusselaers, Co-founder & CEO
Clinical trials are indispensable to bringing cutting-edge treatments to patients and caregivers. They accelerate healthcare innovation, lower costs of medication, bring life-saving cures to patients faster, and boost revenues for hospitals and providers.

But today, nearly nine out of ten clinical trials suffer significant delays, causing delays in the clinical innovation they aim to support.

“Trial criteria have exploded in size and complexity over the past decade. They require in-depth review of patients’ medical records. Today, this is a slow, manual process, since traditional software cannot analyze the 90 percent of the record which is ‘unstructured’, like physician notes, pathology reports, images, etc.,” cites Wout Brusselaers, Co-founder and CEO, Deep 6 AI.

This slows down innovation and increases drug development time and pricing. Deep 6 AI aims to remedy this. The company applies Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Natural Language Processing (NLP) to medical records to find more, better-matching patients for clinical trials exponentially faster.

“We use AI to extract all relevant clinical features from a patient’s records, such as symptoms, diagnoses, treatments, omics, lifestyle data and much, much more,” Brusselaers adds. From these data points, the software creates a multi-dimensional clinical vector of each patient, which researchers and doctors can match against complex trial eligibility criteria to find patients, cohorts and populations “in minutes, rather than months.”

“We turn document-based medical records into rich patient graphs that can be easily read and compared by machine. No other tool today can read all the unstructured data that makes up 90 percent of patient data in such a way.”

C-level executives should realize the benefits from clinical trials for their organizations: better patient outcomes and satisfaction, talent retention, and increased revenues

The software uses advanced AI techniques like link analysis across patients, to discover hidden relationships in the data or detect ‘fuzzy’ medical conditions that are not diagnosed or mentioned by name in an EHR, but only hinted at, in the data. Using machine learning, the software also grows faster and smarter with use, continuously suggesting more, better matches.

The results speak for themselves. A major academic medical center in Los Angeles tested Deep 6 AI’s software on a biomarker for non-small cell lung cancer trial. With the help of its IT team, the principal investigator had found 23 eligible patients over the previous 12 months. The Deep 6 software found 58 eligible matches in mere minutes. “From a small test dataset we were able to find relevant results instantaneously, enabling much faster and more precise patient recruitment,” says Brusselaers.

Moving ahead, the company will continue to build out its offerings. “We’re currently extending the tool for pharma companies so they can identify sites in real-time that have patients who best match their criteria,” explains Brusselaers. “In addition to finding patients for trials, we want to suggest relevant trials for patients,” he adds. For instance, if the standard treatment is not working for a patient, clinical trials can be considered as an extension of care. Brusselaers says that the company will suggest relevant trials based on patients’ medical records.

“C-level health executives should realize the benefits from clinical trials for their organizations: better patient outcomes and satisfaction, a reputation for offering cutting-edge treatments and research, which attracts and retains more talent and patients, and significantly increased revenues.”

“Since every trial stakeholder benefits, eventually, we’ll become a place where providers, physicians, and patients can share data to find trials, and pharma companies can find the right sites with patients for their trials.”
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