China is the largest market of healthcare industry and, with the rapid development of artificial intelligence, will probably become the second-largest incubator, after the Silicon Valley, for great medical breakthroughs, said an expert during a recent forum.
"With the help of artificial intelligence, cloud computing and big data, scientists in China are equipped to discover treatments of rare diseases. Making people immortal is impossible, however, there are solutions to let us live longer," said Piero Scaruffi, founder of the Silicon Valley Artificial Intelligence Research Institute and author of A History of Silicon Valley.
During the forum, hosted by Hangzhou-based Firestone Inventing, Scaruffi said that biotechnology is gradually integrating with artificial intelligence, in that scientists can use AI measures, such as deep learning and cloud computing, to categorize proteins, as well as to analyze and predict protein structure critical to find out the cure for certain rare diseases, as protein plays a crucial role in gene expression.
He said that China, as the most populous nation, has the most potential in the world to overtake the Silicon Valley to boost healthcare evolution, such as helping human beings live longer.
As a matter of fact, governments and enterprises in China are joining hands to answer this question.
According to a report released on Dec 2 by Firestone Inventing, there were in total 14 unicorns from China － privately-owned companies valued at over $1 billion established within the past decade － involved in the healthcare industry this year.
Among them, "internet plus medical care" firms were five, taking up over one third. The five firms were WeDoctor, Medlinker, Ping An Health Cloud Co Ltd, haodf.com, and chunyuyisheng.com.
The same day, the Hangzhou-based healthcare consultancy signed a strategic agreement with the Silicon Valley Artificial Intelligence Research Institute, aiming to offer more scientific innovative support, such as big data and cloud computing, to assist China into becoming the second-largest healthcare incubator.
"Bio industry, after digital economy, is going to evolve into a new economy form, as part of the national strategy," said Yang Hongfei, founder and CEO of Firestone.
"Big data, artificial intelligence and sharing economy have made great impacts on the digital industry. Now, the transformational era for the medical industry is yet to come," he said.
From China Daily