Signals Blog


Artificial Intelligence (AI) already permeates our culture and that’s only going to increase with time and advances to the technology. Some think this is good news, progress and inevitable while others, like Stephen Hawking for example, fear where AI could take us.

AI is on my mind this week with the announcement that the new Vector Institute, focused exclusively on AI, is opening in Toronto, Canada. It is heavily funded by government and corporations ($150 million), and is expected to attract a lot of talent. The choice of Toronto as the location for the institute bodes well for the region and country – hence the federal government’s $40 million commitment in the 2017 budget – but it is likely to benefit the field of regenerative medicine locally, and globally, as well.

AI is already having an impact in regenerative medicine and it is expected to “revolutionize” the field, according to Suraj Kumar Nayak, National Institute of Technology Rourkela, and his co-authors in a conference paper on this topic. The authors identify the following applications of AI in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine:

  • predicting tissue engineering results with artificial neural networks;
  • the use of robot-based rapid prototyping systems for scaffold fabrication;
  • providing assistance in musculoskeletal applications;
  • automated cell processing robotic systems; and,
  • using computational models-based neural networks for complex tissue engineering applications.

Perhaps not surprisingly, AI is an area of interest for CCRM. With the Vector Institute only a few floors away in the same building, I predict we will discuss the potential of future collaborations with them. Stay tuned for an update on this at some point.

Here’s Brendan Frey, University of Toronto and President and CEO of Deep Genomics, and member of the Vector Institute’s founding team, on “Reprogramming the Human Genome: Why AI is Needed.”

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Stacey Johnson

Stacey Johnson

For almost 20 years, Stacey has been providing strategic communications counsel to government, corporate, technology and health organizations. Prior to that, Stacey was at the CTV Television Network, first as a researcher, then as a story producer for “Goldhawk Fights Back,” a special ombudsman segment that aired weekly on the National News and Canada AM. Before joining CCRM as the Director, Communications and Marketing, Stacey was the Director of Communications for the Canadian Arthritis Network. Stacey is editor of Signals. You can follow Stacey on Twitter @msstaceyerin.