Covid-19: In March 2020 the nightmare began (in the West). And as of June 2021, it is not over yet. We have been living with a historical pandemic at a global level for more than a year, and although vaccines already make us see the light at the end of the tunnel that is getting closer and closer, the daily data continues to reflect that every day people continue to be infected with Covid-19. And what’s worse: he keeps dying from the damn bug.
Therefore, and given that we are going to live with Covid-19 for a long time even if it does not hit as hard as it did in its ‘debut’, the tools to identify it quickly are necessary. And if they can also identify if the infected subject has a higher risk of perishing, even better. This is what one specifically does, an Artificial Intelligence capable of tracking the ‘signature’ of the Coronavirus in a person’s body.
The AI that detects Covid-19
A new artificial intelligence (AI) technology to detect increased blood vessel inflammation can calculate a person’s risk of death from Covid-19 and Covid-19 variants. Technology could be used to tailor their treatment and give them the best chance of recovery, according to new research sponsored by the University of Oxford and presented today at the British Cardiovascular Society conference.
Severe cases of Covid-19 have been associated with a “cytokine storm,” in which the virus’s “Spike” protein triggers the immune system to kick in and produce a wave of harmful molecules called cytokines. The Covid-19 “signature” detects the red flags. Now, using routine chest CT scans, researchers have developed a Covid-19 “signature” using machine learning.
Variants of the coronavirus
This “signature” detects biological signals in the fat surrounding the blood vessels of the chest to measure the level of vascular inflammation caused by cytokines in people infected with the virus. The team applied the Covid-19 signature to CT chest scans of 435 people admitted to Oxford, Leicester and Bath hospitals, and compared the degree of inflammation and risk of death in people with and without Covid-19.
In the case of patients admitted to the hospital, the level of inflammation of the blood vessels caused by cytokines was much higher in those who had Covid-19, and even higher in patients infected by variant B.1.1.7 or “alpha”, first identified in the UK.