Duke AI Health Spark Seminar Series: Medical Imaging AI – Where do we go from here?

Can AI safely automate medical decision-making tasks to improve patient outcomes? In this talk, the presenters will share the challenges in the development and translation of medical AI, and how they are being addressed through a blend of innovation in algorithm development, dataset curation, and implementation design. They will first talk about self-supervised learning methods for medical image classification that leverage large unlabeled datasets to reduce the number of manual annotations required for expert-level performance. Then, they will discuss open benchmarks that can help the community transparently measure advancements in generalizability of algorithms to new geographies, patient populations, and clinical settings. Third, they will share insights from studies that investigate how to optimize human-AI collaboration in the context of clinical workflows and deployment settings. Altogether, this talk will cover key ways in which we can realize the potential of medical AI to make healthcare more accurate, efficient and accessible for patients worldwide.


Maciej Mazurowski Joins Duke AI Health to Coordinate New Medical Imaging Initiative

Duke AI Health welcomes Maciej Mazurowski, PhD, who will join its Faculty Council as Director of Radiology Imaging. At AI Health, Dr. Mazurowski will coordinate the AI Health Initiative for Medical Imaging. This new effort will engage experts in machine learning and clinical medicine from across Duke’s campus to foster and accelerate the development, validation, and clinical implementation of machine learning algorithms for medical imaging. “I’m excited to undertake this new challenge and I’m looking forward to working with experts and leadership across the entire campus to build on existing technical and clinical strengths in medical imaging AI at Duke,” Dr. Mazurowski said.


Closeup black and white photograph of an open laptop with hands poised to strike the keys. Image credit: Sergey Zolkin/Unsplash

Duke Health Data Analytics Community Praised for Commitment to Data Democracy

In a recent post at the Tableau blog, the data visualization company praises the Duke Analytics Community (DAC) for the group’s commitment to “taking data democracy to (the) next level.” The post, which is available at the Tableau website, singled out the Duke Cancer Institute’s Claire Howell and Duke University’s Rebecca McDaniel for recognition based on their initiative in helping to create a “department-agnostic space” where users of analytics software across the School of Medicine and Health System could share ideas and improve data access.


Duke School of Nursing’s Michael Cary Selected as Inaugural AI Health Equity Scholar

Duke AI Health welcomes its first AI Health Equity Scholar, Michael P. Cary, PhD, RN, who is now beginning a yearlong scholarship supported by Duke AI Health and the Duke Clinical & Translational Science Institute. The AI Health Equity Scholars Program, which provides funding for Duke University faculty, staff, and postdoctoral scholars to actively collaborate with AI Health leadership, is focused on broadening Duke’s commitment to ethical and equitable data science and artificial intelligence (AI) in health applications.


Blog: When Data Science Meets the Real World

Ursula Rogers shares a deeply personal perspective on medical data. “No patient or family should ever have to worry about whether bad data might be steering medical care in the wrong direction, or whether good data is failing to reach a care provider who can act on it.”


Call for Applications: The AI Health Equity Scholars Program

Duke AI Health and the Duke Clinical & Translational Science Institute are pleased to announce a call for applications with the AI Health Equity Scholars Program. This program will support a minimum 1-year appointment for a faculty member, staff member, or postdoctoral scholar at Duke University.  The AI Health Equity Scholars Program is a new initiative intended to broaden our commitment to ethical and equitable data science and artificial health (AI) applications, with direction from CTSI Director L. Ebony Boulware, MD, MHS, and AI Health Director Michael J. Pencina, PhD. The intention of this program is to broaden our expertise in considering and applying ethical and equitable principles for key initiatives within Duke AI Health. Applications must be submitted by Friday, December 10, 2021 by 10 PM (Eastern Time).


Portrait of Duke AI Health Director Michael Pencina, PhD

Vice Dean for Data Science Michael Pencina, PhD, takes the role of Director for Duke AI Health

Given the rapid growth in and importance of harnessing health data as a tool, Mary Klotman, MD, Dean, Duke University School of Medicine, recently announced the key leadership appointment of Michael Pencina, PhD, Vice Dean for Data Science for the School of Medicine, as the Director of Duke AI Health effective October 13, 2021. Designed as a multidisciplinary initiative, AI Health intends to unlock the enormous opportunity to spur collaborations that will leverage knowledge and expertise from across campus.


BLOG: Using Medical Records to Prepare Doctors and Patients for Difficult Conversations

Now more than ever, clinicians can access an incredible amount of data about their patients. Electronic health records (EHRs) offer a massive repository of information about each individual: notes of all kinds, laboratory results, imaging data, scanned forms, and saved images. Soon, we may even be able to add data from wearable devices such as personal fitness trackers into the mix. However, this breadth of information can be both a blessing and a curse. Clinicians can learn more about their patients from the medical chart than was previously possible—but only if they are able to rapidly and accurately sort through that information and find the most relevant points for a given clinical encounter.


Illustration showing a robot-like hand reaching up to point at an abstract arrangement of glowing points and lines connecting them. Image credit: Tara Winstead/Pexels

Duke AI Health Director Pencina Joins Expert Panel for Discussion on AI Ethics

This December, Duke AI Health Director and Professor of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Michael Pencina will join a group of experts for a panel discussion hosted by the Duke Alumni Forever Learning Institute called “Artificial Intelligence: Capabilities, Liabilities, and Responsibilities.” The discussion, the final installment in a four-part series taking place this fall titled “Artificial Intelligence: Real Ethical Quandaries,” will focus on the expanding role of artificial intelligence in decision-making and the practical and ethical issues that can arise from the use of a technology whose inner workings are often opaque and whose operations can be affected by built-in biases. Panel participants will examine how these technologies are being used in arenas such as medicine and national security and discuss the potential impacts of these tools, both positive and negative, on people’s daily lives. The session will take place as an online Zoom webinar on Tuesday, December 7, 2021, from 3:00-4:00 PM Eastern time, and will be moderated by Duke Law Professor and Director of the Duke Initiative for Science and Society Nita Farahany.


“We Should Agree That Hackers Are the Immune System of the Internet”

Eric Perakslis, PhD, DCRI’s Chief Science & Digital Officer, will present at DEF CON 2021 in a talk called “Truth, Trust, and Biodefense.” Learn more about his presentation in his blog post for the DCRI below:

“On May 12, 2017, a ransomware cyberattack known as WannaCry was launched. Within a day, it was raging worldwide and had infected tens of thousands of computers and electronic devices belonging to the United Kingdom’s National Health Service, causing severe disruptions to hospital operations. Shortly after 15:00 UTC on May 13, the infection was halted when information security researcher and hacker Marcus Hutchins discovered and exploited a “kill switch” embedded in the malware’s code. In addition to greatly slowing WannaCry’s spread, this kill switch also prevented infected computers from being encrypted and their data locked.  Marcus Hutchins’ story is notably complex, but there is no denying that his actions greatly decreased the global harm that likely would have otherwise occurred. The term hacker often brings to mind a faceless, hooded figure that is ubiquitously linked to crime. Given how pervasive this image is, it may surprise some to learn that there are many “good” hackers. This distinction is made especially clear in the viral TED Talk given by cybersecurity Keren Elazari titled “Hackers: the internet’s immune system.” In this talk, Elazari argues that hackers make the internet stronger by testing its defenses, which forces the internet to adapt, improve, and strengthen, not unlike the body’s adaptive immune system.