Taking Charge of Your Health

In 2003, when we sequenced the human genome, we thought we would have the answer
to treat many diseases. But the reality is far from that, because in addition to our genes, our environment and lifestyle
could have a significant role in developing many major diseases. One example is fatty liver disease, which is affecting over 20 percent
of the population globally, and it has no treatment
and leads to liver cancer or liver failure. So sequencing DNA alone
doesn’t give us enough information to find effective therapeutics. On the bright side, there are
many other molecules in our body. In fact, there are
over 100,000 metabolites. Metabolites are any molecule
that is supersmall in their size. Known examples are glucose,
fructose, fats, cholesterol — things we hear all the time. Metabolites are involved
in our metabolism. They are also downstream of DNA, so they carry information
from both our genes as well as lifestyle. Understanding metabolites is essential
to find treatments for many diseases. I’ve always wanted to treat patients. Despite that, 15 years ago,
I left medical school, as I missed mathematics. Soon after, I found the coolest thing: I can use mathematics to study medicine. Since then, I’ve been developing
algorithms to analyze biological data. So, it sounded easy: let’s collect data from all
the metabolites in our body, develop mathematical models to describe
how they are changed in a disease and intervene in those
changes to treat them. Then I realized why no one
has done this before: it’s extremely difficult. (Laughter) There are many metabolites in our body. Each one is different from the other one. For some metabolites,
we can measure their molecular mass using mass spectrometry instruments. But because there could be, like,
10 molecules with the exact same mass, we don’t know exactly what they are, and if you want to clearly
identify all of them, you have to do more experiments,
which could take decades and billions of dollars. So we developed an artificial
intelligence, or AI, platform, to do that. We leveraged the growth of biological data and built a database of any existing
information about metabolites and their interactions
with other molecules. We combined all this data
as a meganetwork. Then, from tissues or blood of patients, we measure masses of metabolites and find the masses
that are changed in a disease. But, as I mentioned earlier,
we don’t know exactly what they are. A molecular mass of 180 could be
either the glucose, galactose or fructose. They all have the exact same mass but different functions in our body. Our AI algorithm considered
all these ambiguities. It then mined that meganetwork to find how those metabolic masses
are connected to each other that result in disease. And because of the way they are connected, then we are able to infer
what each metabolite mass is, like that 180 could be glucose here, and, more importantly, to discover how changes in glucose
and other metabolites lead to a disease. This novel understanding
of disease mechanisms then enable us to discover
effective therapeutics to target that. So we formed a start-up company
to bring this technology to the market and impact people’s lives. Now my team and I at ReviveMed
are working to discover therapeutics for major diseases
that metabolites are key drivers for, like fatty liver disease, because it is caused
by accumulation of fats, which are types
of metabolites in the liver. As I mentioned earlier,
it’s a huge epidemic with no treatment. And fatty liver disease
is just one example. Moving forward, we are going to tackle
hundreds of other diseases with no treatment. And by collecting more and more
data about metabolites and understanding
how changes in metabolites leads to developing diseases, our algorithms will get
smarter and smarter to discover the right therapeutics
for the right patients. And we will get closer to reach our vision of saving lives with every line of code. Thank you. (Applause)

59 thoughts on “The medical potential of AI and metabolites | Leila Pirhaji

  1. The medical field has failed the human race. We were healthier when our health was cared for by ourselves. Exactly what does your doctor know about you, your body, your mental state, your culture/religeon/evironment/family history… does your doctor even know your name without looking at your medical chart? Would your doctor recognize you in the check out line at the grocery store?

  2. Es interesante, sí encuentra un equilibrio y estabilizarlo, acaso eso no evitaría la vejez?
    Ya que parcialmente se controla el número que nunca decrecería ni aumentaría, dejando un número fijo al metabolismo todo el tiempo, no es una especie de manipulación genética?

  3. Irrespective of content!! More often i find ted talks very effective means to improve upon my English skills
    Every ted talks end up adding something new in me with regard to English !!

  4. Far more effective then Praying to a fictional character.! :UPDATE:
    check out the comments below LOL I LOVE triggering bible-thumpers
    Praise The Science!

  5. Fatty liver disease definitely has a treatment, it's called the ketogenic diet. Even just a low carb/sugar diet wok's almost as well. Though it's best used as a preventative treatment

  6. The body repairs itself, during long periods of hunger. Let your metabolism breathe. For this, we should eat 2 meals after 14-16 hours of hunger.

  7. In fact, the source of all these diseases is the global giant food and giant pharmaceutical industry. Food and nutrition makes sick. Medications are killing us.

  8. It’s a nice lecture- but you have to be dumb not to know why more and more has fatty liver- enter ANY food store- endless shelves of sugary products and even more to it- endless shelves with products that are purely made of sugar.

  9. The rise in fatty liver tissue disease corresponds pretty directly with the rise in cheap subsidized high fructose corn syrup for sweeteners in nearly everything. And the rise in subsidies to the corn industry corresponds directly to the contributions of that industry to our politicians.

    Money is making our politics sick and our politicians are making us sick.

  10. Looks like Salma Hayek's younger sister.

    The idea is sound. Hope AI improves in this department. Can be used to also treat blindness, deafness etc

  11. Soo basically we get info in a database and apply "smart AI" to it and magic happens. That's the information I acquired from the video.

  12. if you have a plenty of particular types of data, ai has no limited possibilities on application regardless of industry.

  13. It is interesting , you made a database of interacting metabolite network with AI , did I undrestand right?
    Salute from Bionformatician in Iran , proud of u

  14. About time TED. Keep it like these videos. Smart and interesting instead of the virtue signaling of other videos you've been posting the last few months

  15. Humm what does the GMO s in all our food now do to our bodys???? Human life is just one experiment Universitys mad scientist .

  16. 1. Inbalance in metabolites leads to diseases or diseases lead to metabolic inbalance?
    2. Usually inbalance in metabolites is the expression of a disease not the etiology of it.
    3. Possibly you could create a diagnostic tool, very good, but this is not a therapeutic tool.
    4. Every person has it's own metabolism, there are NO, two metabolic indentical humans in the planet, not even identical twins.
    I could continue but there is no point.

  17. I am a 42 year old, Type 2 Diabetic with A- blood type and would like to know if you are looking for human beings to donate their body for human studies? I would like to help any medical study out. I am located in East Austin, Texas.

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