Jan. 26, 2023 —The inaugural AI2Heal Datathon capped off its two-day festivities with a ceremony awarding five catalyst grants of $15,000 to $20,000 to University of Florida research teams for their artificial intelligence projects here on campus.
In partnership with the College of Medicine Office of Research, the UF Intelligent Critical Care Center, or IC3 — an interdisciplinary research center with faculty members from the College of Medicine, Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering and College of Public Health and Health Professions — hosted the AI2Heal Datathon on Jan. 12-13. The event included AI lectures highlighting current UF research and presentations from teams competing for funding to continue their novel, experiential and multidisciplinary medical AI research.
“We were thrilled by the turnout and participation at our first AI2Heal Datathon,” said Azra Bihorac, M.D., M.S., the College of Medicine senior associate dean for research affairs and co-director of the IC3. “We’re excited by the potential of the winning projects and by seeing so many AI researchers from different UF colleges eager to work with each other.”
The event’s first day showcased 16 AI researchers, who were newly recruited to UF as part of the university wide AI initiative, with the goal of building new and creative collaborations and to demonstrating the various ways AI is being applied to medical research at UF. Eric Rosenthal, M.D., the Joseph & Leila Applebaum Visiting Professor at UF, an associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School, medical director of the Massachusetts General Hospital’s Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit and the ICU director of the hospital’s Clinical Data Animation Center, served as the event’s keynote speaker.
Rosenthal, Bihorac and several of their colleagues, along with many UF faculty, are collaborators in a multi-institutional, National Institutes of Health-funded project called CHoRUS that aims to bring technological and biomedical experts together with social scientists and humanists to generate new biomedical data sets and create automated tools to accelerate the creation of ethically sourced data sets for biomedical research.
“Standing in the way of our progress is the fact that there is no sort of superhighway that connects our data sets from Gainesville to Boston,” Rosenthal said. “By developing standards to build and optimize tools for sharing data, we can map data from really disparate organizations in using a sort of Rosetta Stone, so that we don’t end up being a Tower of Babel and we make the data transparent and reproducible, and we can crowdsource tools.”
After presenting proposed research projects on the event’s second day, five teams of UF faculty each received $15,000 or $20,000 catalyst grants, meant to kickstart new research collaborations in high-impact, emerging fields that have potential for external funding, to help them develop an extramural proposal: