Owkin, a company that develops AI algorithms for cancer centres and pharmaceutical companies has announced its partnering with NVIDIA and King’s College London (KCL) to deliver Federated Learning, a model of AI, into the healthcare and life sciences sector.
Owkin recently passed a proof-of-concept phase and is now providing its AI algorithms to several of the largest cancer centres in Europe and in the US.
The King’s College London Medical Imaging and AI Centre for Value Based Healthcare (AI4VBH) will initially connect four of London’s teaching hospitals (Kings College Hospital, South London & Maudsley, Guy’s & St. Thomas’, and Barts Health) before expanding throughout the UK, and will offer AI services to accelerate research and support clinical practice.
Owkin’s co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Gilles Wainrib, said “King’s College London has assembled the engineering, medical and data science talent, the high-quality patient data, and the governance framework in the AI4VBH Centre, that will show the world the future of healthcare analytics and the power of machine learning. Together we will be enabling the formation of a decentralised dataset that will generate enormous value for research and clinical practice.”
The company aims to demonstrate that a Federating Learning architecture is safer for patients, and statistically equivalent to the traditional pooled model for analysis. Federated learning is a machine learning technique that trains an algorithm across multiple decentralised servers holding local data samples, without exchanging their data samples.
KCL will use Owkin’s Federated Learning software and NVIDIA’s EGX Intelligent Edge Computing platform to develop research, clinical and operational improvements across a large number of clinical pathways, with cancer, heart failure, dementia and stroke likely areas of early focus.
Sebastien Ourselin, Professor of Healthcare Engineering at KCL, said “Our aim with the Innovate UK funded AI4VBH Centre is building a community of academic and private sector researchers that can collaborate to use advanced imaging and AI to develop insight as well as clinical and operational tools that will substantially improve the experience and the clinical outcomes of our patients.”
We are very pleased to welcome Owkin into our consortium of partners. Owkin are thought leaders in the new field of federated learning, and will make an important contribution to the AI Centre by providing the software layer that allows models to be built, orchestrated, secured and traced as they travel between our hospital and university partners.”
“This is enables us to learn from data at scale, while preserving patient privacy. It also ensures that the predictive models developed from patient data are representative and unbiased because they will be trained on the widest possible population of patient data, which in phase 1 includes one third of the London population and will extend far beyond London in coming years.”
In the first phase, the AI4VBH Centre, which is part of KCL School of Biomedical Engineering, will federate the Data of three universities (King’s College London, Imperial College, and Queen Mary University of London) and four London teaching hospitals .
Phase 2 will extend the hospital network by up to 12 hospitals throughout the UK.