This case study does not discuss another way of optimising existing businesses like the other case studies shared - it is about creating new products, new businesses and even new industries. The example referenced here is in medical research but this is just an example - the opportunities are endless.
Machine learning is arguably the greatest green fields research opportunity to arise in the medical field in the last fifty years. Machine learning methods have been developed in a range of medical specialties to improve:
- Diagnosis of disease
- Assessment of the prognosis of conditions
- Treatment of diseases
Emerge Analytics conducted a test for the case of idiopathic optic neuritis – a condition affecting the optic nerve. Patients presenting with this condition may permanently lose their sight or they may recover. However, discovering whether the patient would recover historically may have taken as long as two years and would also have required multiple visits to an ophthalmic surgeon. With the development of a machine learning model, the prognosis of which of these two directions a patient would take was estimated with close to perfect accuracy within an hour of the first doctor consultation on the basis of a few cheap and common blood tests and an eye exam.