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Exploring trends in AI and genetics with the Research Almanac

Who's ahead - and who's catching up

Our Datapoints series brings you quick insights from ETO's data-driven tools and visualizations. Read more posts in the series.

The field of genetics is increasingly incorporating artificial intelligence (AI) tools to process and interpret vast amounts of complex genetic data. As the cost of DNA sequencing falls, genetic data is becoming more important for medical and other biological research. AI's many applications in genetic research include identifying mutations and diagnosing diseases, optimizing gene editing experiments, and understanding which genes create specific characteristics.

ETO's Research Almanac is an easy-to-use dashboard of trends in English-language emerging technology research, including AI and its applications. In this post, we'll explore the Almanac's page for AI and genetics, including stats on overall research growth, leading countries, and shifting patterns of research around the globe. The Almanac counts articles as "AI and genetics" articles if they're classified as AI articles and as "genetics" articles. (For more information on the methodology, view the documentation.) Here's what we found:

  • The United States publishes the most research in AI + genetics, with 825 articles between 2016 and 2021 - 30% of the global total.
  • China comes in at number two with 597 articles published during the same period, or 22% of the global total.
  • However, China's research output increased over 300% from 2016 to 2021, which is about three times the growth of U.S research.
  • India, the United Kingdom, and Canada are the next highest-publishing countries, but each contributes less than 10% of publications globally.

The ETO also identifies top-cited articles in the field. Many focus on processing DNA sequencing frameworks and identifying mutations. DNA processing is needed to sift through large amounts of data: there are over three billion base pairs that make up DNA. Mutational analysis identifies causes of diseases and helps scientists understand what genes do. We can expect more research on the convergence of AI and genetics in the coming years, as scientists and clinicians apply these tools in the medical field.

Want to see more trends in research on AI + biotechnology subjects? Check out the Almanac's dashboards for AI + neuroscience and AI + pharmacology.