Roche Canada Artificial Intelligence Centre of Excellence opens digital competition to tackle ALS

A new initiative focused on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) has been launched by the Roche Canada Artificial Intelligence Centre of Excellence (AI CoE) – the first collaborative centre to combine the expertise of all three national AI institutes under the CIFAR Pan-Canadian AI Strategy - Amii, Mila and the Vector Institute.

The AI CoE is collaborating with Answer ALS and EverythingALS to launch an initiative called the End ALS Challenge, with the support of ALS Society of Canada, Ontario Brain Institute (OBI) and NetraMark Corp. The goal is to surface insights through an open data competition that connects the global AI and neuroscience communities to better understand the overall biology of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and improve diagnosis and drug discovery for ALS patients.

The End ALS Challenge, administered by Kaggle, an online community of data scientists and machine learners, presents 150 rich datasets contributed from 1,000 Answer ALS patient research participants, which were collected through eight clinics and dozens of participating partners. Answer ALS is the largest and most comprehensive ALS research project in history, producing more combined ALS clinical and biological data than has ever been amassed, while openly sharing with the global research community.

The Challenge asks participants to model solutions to key research questions that were developed by neurologists, researchers, and patient communities. An interdisciplinary global expert panel will review the solutions, and participants could have the opportunity to join multi-stakeholder roundtables to share their work and potentially identify further solutions. The outputs created by the scientific community will be shared with the patient community through an open and continuous feedback loop to help translate rare disease research into positive disease-modifying outcomes for patients faster.

"We believe that sharing knowledge and multi-disciplinary expertise through open science can improve public and private collaboration, and contribute to a learning health system that better informs patient care," says Fanny Sie, Strategic Healthcare Partner, AI and Digital Health, Roche Canada. "As the first project launched through the AI CoE, the End ALS Challenge will facilitate data access for all stakeholders to generate meaningful data-driven insights and accelerate improvements for patients with a neurodegenerative disease through innovative AI and machine learning techniques."

Join the End ALS Kaggle Challenge today!

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