Clinical Trials Bot from Microsoft to bolster trial recruitment

By Maggie Lynch contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/B4LLS)
(Image: Getty/B4LLS)

Related tags: Microsoft, Clinical trials, Clinical research, Health care, Patient recruitment, Technology

The software giant creates Clinical Trials Bot to match patients to clinical trials, as part of its health care bot initiative.

The Clinical Trials Bot searches for clinical trial studies related to a disease needed for either patient or clinician, who then answer text questions, following this it suggests links to trials that best match patients’ needs. The bot can be used to also connect drugmakers to test subjects.

Machine reading, a form of artificial intelligence (AI), is used to read and take in selection criteria for each clinical trial and uses this data to determine which patients are a suitable match to trials. The technology began as a hackathon project at Microsoft Corporation’s lab in Israel.

Patients select answers from multiple-choice answers and the software generates an additional question, refining the list of suitable trials.

Clinical Trials Bot is part of a larger health care bot initiative from Microsoft, designed to create automatic chat programs for triaging patients.

“It was a big passion project for everyone involved,”​ Hadas Bitran, group manager of Microsoft Healthcare Israel, said in a statement.

She continued, “We heard stories of families who would sit for days and days looking at the trials.”

Microsoft themselves will not be releasing or commercializing the bot but is in talks with pharmaceutical companies to enable patient recruitment. No partners have yet to be named and no deals have been agreed upon.

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