Coronavirus technologies are being developed by businesses, researchers and innovators around the world to help mitigate the impact of the current pandemic. From 3D printed ventilators to apps that collect data and track the spread of the coronavirus, technology projects are fast becoming essential tools in these uncertain times.
Applying Big Data to understand the evolution of pathogens
Understanding how the new virus, officially known SARS-CoV-2 behaves is essential for highlighting methods that can stop its spread. coronavirus technologies are being utilized at Nextstrain, an open sourced project that offers data, visualization, and sequencing enabling them to show the evolution of pathogens like coronavirus, and offer information that can aid epidemiologists in understanding how it evolves in different countries, and probable mutations that can alter its nature. By sharing the genetic sequencing of over 700 cases of the virus with the appropriate scientific community, the project has helped in corroborating that the virulence of the virus has not changed as the virus has spread.
Implementing machine learning to identify future therapies
When enough quality data is present, AI can prove to be a very powerful tool in coronavirus technologies for predicting future trends and even looking for possible treatments. AbCellera, a biotechnology company, is implementing a machine learning model to come up with therapies based on antibodies received from patients that have fully recovered from the disease. They have used AI technology and analyzed more than five million immune cells as they are trying to search for those that can produce antibodies that help patients recover. So far with the aid of AI, 500 antibodies have been identified as potential candidates for use in future therapies.
Using telemedicine to support public services
Communities around the world are using telemedicine as an alternative to avoid overcrowding hospitals with an unmanageable influx of patients. Telemedicine is being used as part of the coronavirus technologies in streamlining the diagnosis and treatment process, making it easier and faster. Patients simply need to open an application, input their symptoms, and await a doctor to get back to them through a viral consultation. The Xuhui public hospital in Shanghai China has completed successful consultation with patients all over the world.
A designated app to free up hotlines
The regional government in Madrid Spain has launched ‘Corona Madrid’ an initiative that is available on web and app. People who suspect they might be carrying the virus can go through a physical self-assessment based on their symptoms, and based on the results they will receive the appropriate advice and instruction about steps to take. This initiative is one of many coronavirus technologies aimed at reducing call congestion for the coronavirus hotline all while offering health authorities a concise snapshot of the pandemic.
3D printed ventilators
Ventilators have proven to be a necessary piece of equipment for treating the most severe cases of the coronavirus. But there is a shortage of supplies in the health system. To address this problem, several groups have set up network communication channels and platforms around the world, using technologies like Telegram where they are sharing information regarding open source designs for manufacturing ventilators with 3D printing. Anyone having a 3D printer can contribute by printing the necessary respirator component. The aim is to make them more accessible to health care services.
This project is showing fast results, in just a matter of few days, individuals from one of the groups in Spain managed to create an open source prototype for the respirator, which has already proven successful when testing on a pig in the Central University Hospital of Asturias.
A chatbot that can answer questions
The World Health Organization (WHO) has launched the official WHO chatbot with the purpose of providing information about the coronavirus and offering answers to questions being frequently asked such as infection rates and measures to be taken to protect oneself and others.