Artificial General Intelligence is a machine that is highly capable of deciphering the world, and learn on their own as a regular human being. Even though Artificial general intelligence is decades away, narrow artificial intelligence is often used in many industries, like certain phases of vaccine development. Developing a vaccine is a long process with many steps like – identifying the pathogen, isolating the structure of the pathogen, studying and recognising the required pattern, formulate a vaccine and testing. All these steps require a lot of manpower. With the help of Artificial General Intelligence the time to develop a vaccine can be shorted, as the Artificial General Intelligence is capable of making decisions as a regular human being.
How Does a Vaccine Work?
There are many forms of vaccines, Live-attenuated ,Inactivated, subunit, toxoid, conjugate. In Live-attenuated type, it introduces a weakened form of the pathogens to the body, and lets the body to produce antigens on its own. Inactivated method uses dead pathogens to cause an immune response, and it’s generally safer than Live-attenuated type, but requires multiple shots. Subunit/conjugate type only uses a part of the pathogens necessary for causing an immune response; hence it gives a very strong protection against pathogens with the downside of requiring multiple shots. In all the types, the vaccine gives a protection against pathogens, and enough time for the body to produce antigens until the body takes care of its own.
How will Artificial General Intelligence be used for Vaccinations?
Prevention of infectious diseases needs strong measures to save lives, and vaccines are the best weapon against it. In the backdrop of a pandemic the society can’t wait for a vaccine to be developed with millions of lives at stake. Usually the vaccine development process takes years, and by the time it’s available to general public, society had already suffered tremendously. This is why it’s important to speed up the development of vaccine. One of such ways is to involve Artificial Intelligence to the development process. Flinders University in Australia used a Search Algorithm for Ligands (SAM), an AI program, to create a potential flu vaccine with pending human trials. Modern traditional vaccination is already successful, but AI powered vaccine development takes it decades ahead saving millions of dollars, and tremendous amount of time as per Nikolai Petrovsky who led the team in developing SAM program. According to its creator, the entire vaccine was created by Artificial intelligence with the data supplied by the researchers.
The problem of this approach is the AI program makes the decisions based on the data provided by the researchers, for instance in this particular example, the AI program was trained with information of compounds that activate human immune system, then in the other assistance program, trillions of chemical compounds were generated to feed to the SAM program. Both these processes can be automated with Artificial general intelligence. Artificial general intelligence is capable of learning things on its own, and using what it learned from one domain in another area. This allows the Artificial general intelligence system to come up with its own compounds that activate human immune systems, and invent new chemical compounds to feed to its own program without any human intervention. There are about millions of protein fragments present on the very surface of a cell and are visible to the T-cells that provide immune response. Studying every fragment is impossible for a human mind let alone doing predictions and computations on it, and thus letting the AI program to find compounds that activate human immune system drastically improves the existing system. Removing human intervention not only drastically improves the vaccine development, but also reduce the cost in vaccine development, and minimise the risks. The only information the AGI program requires is a blood sample of an infected patient, then AGI is perfectly capable of identifying the structure of the virus, and coming up with a vaccine on its own in a matter of minutes if enough computing power is provided.
Vaccination is the first line of defence against infectious diseases that ravages many nations by killing tens of thousands of people. Unfortunately, the process of vaccine development consumes a lot of time, and manpower due to its complex nature. Developing a vaccine involves a range of phases like identifying the pathogen, model its genome, formulate a vaccine, synthesise it, and distribute it across the globe. All these phases are incredibility complex, and consume a tremendous of time; hence it’s important to make use of technology to reduce the burden on the researchers to speed up the vaccine development. One of ways to speed up this process is to use Artificial intelligence. Flinders University in Australia managed to formulate a vaccine against flu entirely with Artificial intelligence, but still human intervention was used to certain extent to feed data to the system. Artificial general intelligence further enhances this process by removing the human intervention entirely in the formulating phases to speed up the development of vaccines. This not only saves many lives, but also the money as well.