The Johns Hopkins Artificial Intelligence and Technology Collaboratory (AITC) for Aging Research received funding from the National Institute on Aging. The plan for the AITC was developed jointly by faculty across the Whiting School of Engineering, the School of Medicine and the Carey Business School. The overarching goal of the AITC is to connect engineers, bioengineers, gerontologists, geriatricians, clinicians focused on aging-related conditions and business ventures in order to develop an ecosystem that promotes the development, testing, implementation and dissemination of novel A.I. and technologies that improve the health and well-being of older adults. This national center will ensure that any developments are easily accessible to traditionally underserved populations of older adults in both urban and rural areas across the U.S. The center will be led by a multi-PI interdisciplinary team that includes:
- Peter Abadir, M.D., a geriatrician with extensive research expertise on molecular measurements and biomarkers of physical and cognitive decline in older adults
- Rama Chellappa, Ph.D., a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering and Biomedical Engineering in the School of Medicine with expertise in technology development
- Greg Hager, Ph.D., the Mandell Bellmore Professor of Computer Science and the founding Director of the Malone Center for Engineering in Healthcare
- Jeremy Walston, M.D., a geriatrician, the Deputy Director of the Johns Hopkins Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology and the PI of the Johns Hopkins Older Americans Independence Center with expertise in biological and clinical translational frailty and resiliency research
The JHU AITC will function through eight cores led by Hopkins-based scientific and technological expertise from across JHU. In addition, a critical partnership with business partners outside of Hopkins and a key clinical collaboration with the Iowa office of Rural Health, Veterans Rural Health Resource Centers Leadership will be instrumental to the stakeholder, equity and implementation goals of this AITC. The eight cores include:
- The Administrative Core (A.C.) will be comprised of the P.I.s and the core directors. This group will receive input from an advisory committee of academic, clinical and business leaders who will provide relevant expertise and connections to the leadership team. An External Advisory Panel of business leaders will also be established to help assure product dissemination.
- The Stakeholder Engagement Core (SEC) will be led by geriatricians Dr. Nancy Schoenborn, MD, MHS (SOM), and co-investigator Thomas Cudjoe, MD (SOM). They will provide a conduit of information regarding the goals of older adults in the AI/T space and meaningful stakeholder connections to older adults in underserved areas. This core developed a committee of advisors from other institutes, including the University of Iowa and the V.A. center for rural health.
- The Technology Identification and Training Core (TITC) will be led by Drs. Greg Hager, Ph.D. (WSE) and Alicia Arbaje, M.D. Ph.D. (SOM). This core will develop processes that identify and articulate older adults' needs and connect those needs to promising areas of A.I. technology that, in turn, drive the solicitation and funding of pilots. The TITC also will play a crucial role in disseminating the knowledge and mechanisms developed throughout this process to increase the awareness of the opportunities for A.I. innovation addressing the needs of older adults through research and education programs.
- The Clinical Translation and Validation Core (CTVC) will be led by Drs. Rama Chellappa, Ph.D. (WSE) and Peter Abadir M.D. (SOM). This core will primarily serve as an in-house "clinical laboratory" for innovators to facilitate clinical validation of A.I. approaches/methods or technologies. Feasibility and other testing will take place in existing space located throughout the Whiting School of Engineering and on the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center Campus. Some A.I. projects deemed novel, promising but lack preliminary evidence or require more validation and testing before piloting will be selected to undergo rigorous feasibility testing in clinical and "real-world" settings in the CTVC to ensure success before advancing these projects full pilot testing.
- The Data Integration and Quality Core (DIQC) will be led by Dr. Christopher Chute, M.D., JHU Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Health Informatics, Medicine, Public Health, and Nursing at Johns Hopkins University, and Chief Research Information Officer for Johns Hopkins Medicine.
- Pilot Core A (PCA) has an AD/ADRD focus and will be led by Quincy Samus, Ph.D. (SOM), an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and an applied gerontologist with training in epidemiology and health services research, Dr. Esther Oh, MD. Ph.D., an Associate Professor of Medicine, the director of the Johns Hopkins Memory and Alzheimer's Treatment Center, and Dr. Najim Dehak, Ph.D., an associate professor of electrical engineering with expertise in using A.I. to diagnose and evaluate patients with A.D. and Parkinson's. This core will facilitate RFAs for pilot projects related to A.D. diagnosis and care.
- Pilot Core B (PCB) will have an Aging/Geriatric Medicine Focus, led by Jeremy Walston, MD (SOM) and Suchi Saria, Ph.D. (WSE) as Co-Directors. Dr. Saria is the John C. Malone Associate Professor of Computer Science, Statistics, and Health Policy and the founding Research Director of the Malone Center for Engineering in Healthcare. This core will facilitate an RFA development process and fund projects related to healthy aging, Geriatric conditions beyond A.D., and functionality.
- The Networking and Mentoring Core (NMC) will work to build bridges between funded investigators, technologies, and business and venture capital leaders. Led by Dr. Phillip Phan, Ph.D. (Carey Business School), the Alonzo and Virginia Decker Professor at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School with joint appointments in the Schools of Medicine, Engineering, the Malone Center for Engineering in Healthcare, and the Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality.