Artificial intelligence is at work in many of the COVID-19 research efforts taking place around the world. The Canadian-based charitable organization CIFAR
recently funded 14 new projects that would include machine learning research and application to address the COVID-19 outbreak.
Bogdan Mazoure and Guillaume Rabusseau are researchers with Mila
, an artificial intelligence research institute based in Quebec. They received CIFAR and Genome Canada funding to lead a project which will use AI to do a gene-by-gene analysis of the SARS-CoV-2 genome. By tracing the evolution of the virus they will be able to reconstruct what amounts to a genealogic family tree of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, covering a time span of more than 20 years for 3 host species.
Freelance broadcaster Don Hill talked with the 2 researchers about their work which will lead to a better understanding of the parts of the virus genome which control specific functions such as transmission or the infection rate for different strains.