Google Has Released an AI Tool That Makes Sense of Your Genome - MIT Technology Review
DeepVariant was developed by researchers from the Google Brain team, a group that focuses on developing and applying AI techniques, and Verily, another Alphabet subsidiary that is focused on the life sciences.
The team collected millions of high-throughput reads and fully sequenced genomes from the Genome in a Bottle (GIAB) project, a public-private effort to promote genomic sequencing tools and techniques. They fed the data to a deep-learning system and painstakingly tweaked the parameters of the model until it learned to interpret sequenced data with a high level of accuracy.
“The success of DeepVariant is important because it demonstrates that in genomics, deep learning can be used to automatically train systems that perform better than complicated hand-engineered systems,” says Brendan Frey, CEO of Deep Genomics.
The release of DeepVariant is the latest sign that machine learning may be poised to boost progress in genomics.
DeepVariant will also be available on the Google Cloud Platform. Google and its competitors are furiously adding machine-learning features to their cloud platforms in an effort to lure anyone who might want to tap into the latest AI techniques (see “Ambient AI Is About to Devour the Software Industry”).