7th AI and Health Summit on Healthy Aging of Brain and Mind

4/22/2024 George Heintz ,Summit Organizer, Director Health Data Analytics, HCESC

Written by George Heintz ,Summit Organizer, Director Health Data Analytics, HCESC

Side-by-side photos of two people talking to a crowd while standing at a podium.
Keynote Speaker: (l.) Art Kramer, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Cognitive & Brain Health at Northeastern University, (r.) Konrad Körding, Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.

Gathering researchers and experts at the forefront of AI and healthcare, the 7th AI and Health Summit on Healthy Aging of Brain and Mind with AI exemplified excellence in the field. Welcoming remarks from Harley T. Johnson, Ph.D., Associate Dean for Research, and James M. Rehg, Ph.D., Director of the Health Care Engineering Systems Center, set the stage for a day of high-quality presentations and discussions.

The event was chaired by Professor Lav R. Varshney University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Ph.D., Professor David Liebovitz, M.D., Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, and organized by George Heintz, Director Health Data Analytics, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign bringing together a diverse array of speakers, panelists, and attendees from academia, and healthcare institutions based in the midwest. The summit featured keynote addresses from esteemed researchers such as Art Kramer, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Cognitive & Brain Health at Northeastern University, who explored the influence of exercise and physical activity on cognitive health, and Konrad Körding, Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, who delved into the intersection of machine learning and causal inference in medical data analysis. He highlighted the importance of embracing "The Bitter Lesson, a seminal paper by Rich Sutton" – prioritizing large-scale data and computational resources – for advancing medical research. He underscored the significance of understanding causal relationships in clinical data and preparing for a future where data-driven approaches are paramount for clinical researchers.

Five people sit in chairs addressing a crowd.
Panel (l. to r.): Moderator Prof. John Vozenilek, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, OSF HealthCare; Harshal Mahajan, Ph.D. Assistant Director of Research, LIFE Home; Prof. Lance Fortnow, Ph.D. Dean of the College of Computing, Illinois Institute of Technology; Prof. Megan Huisingh-Scheetz, MD, Associate Director Aging Research Program, University of Chicago; Frank Naeymi-Rad, Ph.D., FACMI Chairman of Leap of Faith Technologies.

Speakers like Emily Rogalski, Ph.D., University of Chicago, and Yudu Li, Ph.D., University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign highlighted the potential of technology-driven interventions in addressing neurodegenerative diseases and mapping brain function using AI-powered imaging techniques. Panel discussions, moderated by John Vozenilek, M.D., focused on crucial topics such as rural hospitals' need to re-evaluate workflows, modernize infrastructure, and invest in AI to integrate innovative solutions as presented in the summit. Besides infrastructure investments in rural communities, the panel emphasized the importance of staff training on AI technologies and community engagement to enable and foster accessibility. 

Three photos featuring winners of a poster contest receiving their prizes
Poster Competition Winners: 1. Yurui Cao, Advisor Professor Ravi Iyer, Ph.D.; 2. Hieu Hoang, Advisor Professor Minh Do,
Ph.D.; 3. Abhi Komboj, Advisor Professor Minh Do, Ph.D., Sponsor: Andy Sharma, Brand Engagement Network, (left)

The summit also featured engaging poster presentations showcasing innovative research. Winners Yurui Cao with “Exploring Temporal Dynamics of Functional Connectivity in Epilepsy and Modeling Multiday Cycles in Seizure Clusters Using Intracranial EEG Data", Hieu Hoang with “A Clinically Relevant Feature Design and Machine Learning Approach for Vision-based Digitized Neurological Examination”, and Abhi Kamboj with “Sensor Fusion and Cross-Modal Transfer for Human Action Recognition” were recognized for their contributions sponsored by Brand Engagement Network. The event's exceptional format, including interactive sessions and networking opportunities, fostered collaboration and knowledge exchange among attendees.

Side-by-side photos of two men holding microphones addressing a crowd
Co-Chairs (l. to r.): Professor Lav R. Varshney, Ph.D., University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, Professor
David Liebovitz, M.D., Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

Overall, the 7th AI and Health Summit left attendees equipped with valuable insights and collaborations to advance research and innovation in the intersection of AI and brain health. Notable companies and
universities attending included Northeastern University, UPenn, University of Chicago, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, OSF Healthcare, Jump Arches, and numerous healthcare institutions and industry partners. The summit saw a unusual high attendance, reflecting the importance and relevance of the topics discussed. As Prof. Varshney, and summit Co-Chair noted, “Ranging from the molecular and connectomic bases of brain health to the role that music, exercise, and public policy have on loneliness and mental wellbeing, this summit brought together all aspects of AI applied to healthy aging of brain and mind. Such a holistic view is important for addressing one of the most important challenges of our age.

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This story was published April 22, 2024.